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Flaschenpost: David versus Goliath in the wine business

«We want to make buying wine as easy, convenient and inexpensive as possible,» is the simple but convincing ethos of the two young entrepreneurs, Renzo Schweri and Dominic Blaesi. In just six years, they have succeeded in turning Flaschenpost into the biggest wine shop in Switzerland. They are celebrating their 10th anniversary this year.

24 November 2017, author: Raphael Bühler (Crafft), photo: iStock

The idea for Flaschenpost came from a late night discussion in a shared student apartment.
The idea for Flaschenpost came from a late night discussion in a shared student apartment.

The two Zurich natives, Renzo Schweri and Dominic Blaesi, studied economics together and lived in a shared apartment. In 2006, they embodied their love of wine in a company of their own – with a confident vision: «With Flaschenpost we want to be for wine what Amazon is for books.» And with seemingly overwhelming competition from the retail trade, this is an ambitious goal.

«Our neighbours in the market have much greater financial resources for marketing,» Dominic Blaesi is aware. So the e-Commerce specialist is always looking for new approaches to marketing. «I find it incredibly fun. I think I am lucky to get up on nine out of ten days and look forward to work.»

Impressively simple business model

The online shop offers over 17,000 wines from the 70 most prestigious specialist Swiss wine merchants. Customers thus no longer have to look for the wine they want from different producers and retailers. They can do this centrally through a single portal. After the order is placed, Flaschenpost collects the wines from the different partner wine merchants. Customers receive just one delivery and pay one delivery fee – even if they order wine from several merchants.

Successful future

With creativity and passion, Flaschenpost has become the biggest supplier in the Swiss online wine trade in just a few years. The two founders are justifiably proud of what they have achieved so far, and also know what the recipe for further success is: «I want to make sure that the customers experience the pleasure we get from our 'baby' at all times. Our goal is always to 'wow' them and exceed their expectations,» says Renzo Schweri.

A reason to celebrate

This year Flaschenpost is celebrating its 10th anniversary. It is no surprise that the two founders toasted this occasion with a good glass of wine. They selected the Piemonte red wine Barbaresco Santo Stefano by Castello di Neive. They drank this wine at the vineyard of the same name back when they were writing their business concept for Flaschenpost.
Success or not, Renzo Schweri and Dominic Blaesi are not standing down. «We are really looking forward to being able to help shape the wine industry over the next ten years too, with lots of passion and new innovations, and continuing to make our vision reality.» 

Win a Flaschenpost voucher

Subscribe to the Helvetia newsletter and win a voucher for the Flaschenpost online wine shop. We hold a quarterly prize draw among all newsletter subscribers for three vouchers, each worth CHF 100.

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