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The Drinkme “case”: logistics is the key to sustaining wine & spirits and to raising capital

The project counts on proprietary software and an entirely digital supply chain to quickly distribute to the HORECA channel
The Drinkme team

“Drinkme” is a startup three friends created during the toughest months of the Pandemic. Their winning recipe is using logistics as the key to sustaining the Italian wine & spirits sector and to raising capital on the markets. Their goal is to digitize and automate the HORECA (hotels, restaurants, catering) distribution sector using an online platform, aimed mainly at hotels, bars, discos, beach resorts and restaurants, so they can offer receiving goods quickly, in flexible delivery times and no minimum order. Now, Drinkme boasts a pool of investors in the logistics and transportation, integration and IT fields, including DOJO, a solid company in the innovation of the fintech world. Furthermore, software management, designed specifically for the distribution world, supports customers in daily stock management, consumption analysis and automated purchases through integrated algorithms.
Drinkme was created in May 2021, and by September the startup opened its first warehouse in Varese, which they later expanded and opened warehouses in Milan, Legnano, Monza Brianza - Como and Forte dei Marmi. In December 2022, thanks to its continuous and rapid growth, Drinkme launched an equity crowdfunding campaign, which successfully closed at an overfunding of 280.000 euros. This milestone made it possible for the company to carry out many aspects of their project, including introducing internal software to digitize the entire supply chain. These, then, are the premises for their rapid growth, equal to +24.7% in the first 19 months of activity, and an average value per order increase of +12.7% year on year. Their 2022 turnover was 700.000 euros, which should double in 2023.
Drinkme aims to become a single interlocutor through the use of the web platform (and soon also the App), so as to cut the time and effort the HORECA channel professionals dedicate to managing orders and deliveries in half. Their real strength, though, is proprietary software. Algorithms have been integrated into the management system, therefore, it is possible to analyze consumption and automate purchases utilizing an automatic tracking system. Drinkme is, in fact, the first startup to launch RFID technology on the market, which allows you to uniquely track bottles through the RFID reader - a small tool with which you can register inventory in real time to track all the bottles entering and leaving the business.
Looking towards the future, the company aims to become one of the leading wine & spirits distributors for the HORECA sector, focusing on last mile distribution, as well as the only market player to have a fully digitized supply chain using proprietary and registered software. The goal is to expand first on the National level, opening other new warehouses in small and medium-sized Italian cities, including Courmayeur, by the end of 2024. Then they plan to approach new, emerging countries such as Switzerland, Spain and France, until they reach 18 warehouses by 2027. To support its growth, Drinkme is now officially in the fundraising phase, aiming to develop new and innovative functions of software management and the future app, expand the products offered and support staff growth, which from 10 employees the goal is to reach 32 employees by the end of 2027.
“We have 500 products distributed in bubbles, wines, spirits and traditional drinks. Our business relationships with suppliers such as Red Bull, Pernod Ricard, Diageo, Moet & Chandon, Marchesi Antinori, Ceretto, Meregalli and Velier permit us to group 70% of a traditional wine list on the Drinkme platform, which can also be customized. As a mater of fact, depending on the needs of individual customers, we often add more niche beverages and draw up a personalized price list, based on commercial agreements that can be consulted using the platform profile”, Fabio Brusa Pasquè, General Manager of Drinkme explained.“Drinkme’s structure includes a large central warehouse that supplies many small satellite warehouses, which, in turn, take care of delivering the goods to the final customer. Together with the use of artificial intelligence systems, our structure speeds up the entire supply chain and management of the warehouse and conveyors, making it possible to significantly speed up delivery times”, Fabio Brusa Pasquè added.

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