Botham Wines
Sir Ian Botham, with his Botham wines products which are part of Benchmark Drinks.
Rebecca Wayman

£750k investment for Sir Ian Botham-backed wine and spirits company in London

London-based wine business Benchmark Drinks has received a £750k funding package from HSBC UK.

Benchmark Drinks is responsible for developing Botham Wines and distributing Graham Norton Wines. The company is hoping the HSBC funding will help it to expand into new international markets.

Established in 2018, Benchmark Drinks has used the finance to support export plans to several priority countries. It now exports to Australia, Ireland, Spain, the Caribbean and Bahrain, with plans to distribute its wines to Dubai, India, Sri Lanka and New Zealand.

Paul Schaafsma, Benchmark Drinks’ managing director, said: “Having started exporting in our inaugural year, HSBC UK’s backing will further fuel our expansion plans.

“Our vision is to make our brands household names across the globe, so we’re excited to start this journey and be in a position to share our wines with the rest of the world.”

Benchmark Drinks employs seven members of staff in its Northamptonshire distribution centre and, as a direct result of the finance, has hopes to introduce more jobs in the UK.

The funding should also enable the company to sign a five-year distribution agreement with Australian retail giant, Woolworths Group.

Following the agreement, Benchmark’s wines are now being sold in 1,300 outlets across the country and the company has seen a 150 per cent increase in its turnover.

David Hamblin, South London regional director for HSBC UK’s Business Banking, added: “We’re glad to be a part of Benchmark Drinks’ ambitious growth plans. As the company continues to make its mark in the wine industry, we look forward to working with them further as they continue to expand their global footprint.”

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