Stock secrets: BBX
Author: Sophie Thorpe
What is it?
BBX, the fine wine marketplace, allows you to trade wine stored in our warehouses. That means you can bid on or buy wine stored by other customers, as well as selling any wine you have stored with us.
How does it work?
There are three main ways of using BBX: buying, bidding and selling.
BUY: This is most people’s entry point to BBX. Anyone with wine stored at Berry Bros. & Rudd can list their wine for sale on BBX. You can easily purchase any of those wines (choosing from over 5,000 of them), in exactly the same way that you would make any other In Bond purchase from us. We transfer ownership from the customer selling the wine to you, and once complete you can do what you like with the wine: age it, sell it or have it delivered.
BID: Bidding is what makes BBX so interesting – and for a wine geek, fun. You can bid on any wine that is stored with us – whether or not it has been actively listed for sale. That means you can bid on a whopping 26,000 different wines: from Brunello di Montalcino and En Rama Sherry to the most strictly allocated Grand Cru Burgundy from Leflaive, Jayer and Leroy.
SELL: Wines stored In Bond with us can be listed for sale on BBX (provided they meet certain criteria). So, if you change your mind about that case of Claret, or are no longer as keen on Rioja, you can list it on BBX. There are no listing fees – you only pay a small commission if you successfully sell a wine. There’s a host of valuation data at your fingertips, helping you set the right price. Your listing appears on Wine-Searcher too, giving it global visibility. If you don’t want to actively list wine, you can also register to receive bid alerts on wines in your cellar. You can set the parameters, so you’ll only receive an email if someone bids, for example, 20% above the price you paid for it, or 10% above the Liv-ex market price.
TIPS FROM THE TEAM
It’s not just about the big names. Lafite, Latour and Mouton might make up over 40% of sales on BBX, but it isn’t just about investment-grade fine wine. It can be a brilliant way to seek out exceptional value “wine-drinkers’” wines, as Private Account Manager Jared Ehret explains: “I recently spied a case of the first vintage of Richard Kershaw’s Syrah – an exceptional wine, listed at an extremely reasonable price. Clearly, someone had just changed their mind about it – not looking to make money, but just wanting to move it along.”
Bids have to be realistic. There’s no minimum amount for a bid, but you’ll only be successful if they’re close to the market price. “No one wants to have their time wasted,” Private Account Manager Fergus Stewart explains, “you might get lucky with a bid that’s slightly below market, but don’t be silly with it.”
You don’t need to worry about provenance. If you’re buying at auction, you need to do your homework and make sure what you’re buying is up to scratch, but as Private Account Manager Simon Herriot points out, “With BBX, provenance is guaranteed. Every case is checked by our team when it comes into the warehouse, so you know it will be in perfect nick.” In fact, some wines have barely moved: they’ll have been bought En Primeur, shipped straight from the producer to our warehouse when bottled and not moved since.
Delve into the data. Take advantage of the valuation data on offer – with historic pricing from BBX as well as the most recent transaction data from Liv-ex and Wine-Searcher. “But do check the case format,” Cellar Plan Manager Tom Cave adds. “Valuation data is supplied for 12-bottle cases – so you’ll have to do the maths if you’ve got, say, a six-pack or single-magnum case.”
It’s incredibly easy. There are no landing fees, no email chains arranging transfers of stock, and it’s all relatively “instant”. “Any wine purchased will appear in your cellar online within a couple of days,” Simon Herriot explains. “It’s a really easy way to get your hands on back vintages. And take advantage of the Best of BBX list – where we’ve done the hard work for you, unearthing the best-value wines listed.”