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2015 year in review and hopes and fears for 2016: Robin Copestick, Copestick Murray

Published:  24 December, 2015

Robin Copestick of Copestick Murray looks back at Stoke City football and how healthy the UK wine trade was in 2015. Although 2015 was good- "2016 will be better still."

How was 2015 for you and your business?

2015 has been a fantastic year both personally and professionally. I count myself to be very fortunate to love my job and my life.

Stoke City have changed their name to Stokealona, England won The Ashes, I have been to some great places and my golf is improving after a few years of quite poor play.

In terms of business I have met some brilliant people and Copestick Murray have had another record year. Margins in the UK are incredibly tight but thanks to a booming export market for I heart the company's overall profitability is looking healthy as well.

What do you think were the most significant things that happened, or issues and trends that occurred in 2015?

Stoke beat Liverpool 6-1, they beat Chelsea twice in ten days and have just humiliated Man City. England also bowled out Australia for 60 at Trent Bridge.

Meanwhile in the UK wine world, despite price increases, Prosecco sales continue to explode (in some unfortunate cases, literally) and Malbec is steadily growing.

I think the move from some of the retailers to more of an EDLP strategy will be good for wine in the UK in the long run.

What opportunities are you most looking forward to in 2016?

Stoke's League Cup Semi Final v Liverpool is a great opportunity to get to Wembley again.

But if you mean wine then here goes:

I see export continuing to drive sales for Copestick Murray, our new office in Ireland is going to create a wealth of opportunity and we have some exciting NPD to launch as well as some innovative consumer led PR activity.

2015 has been amazing but 2016 will be better still.

What are the biggest challenges facing the trade in 2016?

In the UK deflationary prices, low margins and a shrinking wine market are the biggest challenges.

Who are the people, companies and retailers to watch in 2016?

Shaqiri, Bojan, Arnautavic and Jack Butland (all Stoke players for the uninitiated) are the people to watch.

But back to wine I am really looking forward to working with all companies and retailers who share our vision and passion that wine has to be fun, uncomplicated and exciting.

If I didn't work for Copestick Murray I would certainly be keeping a close eye on us though!

What are you doing for Christmas and New Year?

Friends coming to us on 23rd and 24th, Christmas Day at a great friend's house in London, Boxing Day watching Stoke beat Man Utd (hopefully), Cornwall for New Year, then Cape Town for business and a spot of cricket watching.

What will be your favourite tipple over Christmas and New Year?

Schloss Johannisberg Goldlack TBA. I bought 5 cases by mistake (long story) a few years ago but its truly delicious.

Favourite Christmas film?

The Great Escape - nothing to do with Christmas but always seemed to be on over the Christmas period. So bad and yet so good.

Ideal day out over Christmas period?

Watching Stoke win against Man Utd or playing golf at Trevose in Cornwall.

What do you want most from Father Christmas?

A Stoke win on Boxing Day.

New Year's resolution?

To have a great time, all the time.