A long way to go for proportional representation of women in the regional beverage industry…but it’s headed in the “right direction”

November 10, 2023 | By Rupkatha B

Trupti Majethiya, Co-founder & Managing Director, Royal Spirit

The alcoholic beverage space in the region has always been male dominated. There is still a long way to go for proportional representation of women in the regional beverage market that’s, but it’s headed in the right direction, feels Trupti Majethiya, Co-founder & Managing Director, Royal Spirit.

“Women are breaking new ground across sectors in the region, smashing glass ceilings. I anticipate a more inclusive future in the beverage industry as well. While our core proposition is delivering a premium buying experience, at Royal Spirit we are equally committed to promoting diversity and equal opportunities. We welcome and support women looking for employment or collaboration opportunities and remain open to initiatives that foster diversity within our industry,” she added.

So, does Royal Spirit do?

A new entrant in the UAE’s beverage landscape, Royal Spirit is rubbing shoulders with some well-established names offering over 1,000 wine labels and 700 beverage brands.

“There’s something for every taste and budget. From social drinkers to connoisseurs, everyone will find what they seek, all while enjoying a memorable luxury buying experience. We also love getting involved in our community, teaming up with leading hospitality brands offering unique experiences, and supporting sustainability initiatives that resonate with us,” Majethiya elaborated.

Asked what drove her decision to enter the UAE beverage market that already has a few strong players, she said, “Having studied the processes and dynamics of the beverage market, we saw an opportunity for a differentiated approach through curated beverage selections, luxury shopping experiences and the power of community. Our passion for high-quality beverages and our commitment to offering a distinctive experience that will transcend a transactional exchange inspired our entry. In many ways, we side-stepped a big chunk of the traditional beverage market and carved a new niche.”

However, Royal Spirit’s journey so far hasn’t been free from challenges. In this context, Majethiya shared some lessons that she has learnt in a short while.

“One major challenge was navigating the complex landscape of licences, permits and regulatory compliances. Establishing our unique model — from sourcing to doorstep deliveries — was also a major challenge. However, these challenges reinforced the importance of meticulous planning, adherence to regulatory requirements and the use of technology to streamline operations. We drew up a well-structured blueprint backed by technology. After the stage was set, we have only been looking ahead to deliver on our promises to the customers.”

Looking ahead, Royal Spirit has robust growth plans for the next 12-24 months.

To begin with, the brand is all set to launch the Royal Spirit app to offer customers the convenience of shopping for beverages on mobile phones. “We are also strongly focused on expanding our market presence, both regionally and internationally. This expansion will involve increasing our distribution to new regions and exploring promising international markets where we believe our unique luxury experience can make an impact. Our product emphasis will be on limited editions and exclusive releases. That aside, we will lean on our strong commitment to sustainability, community engagement and collaborations with leading hospitality brands,” Majethiya concluded.

Top three beverage trends to look out for in 2024, as shared by Mark Demyan, General Manager, Royal Spirit

  • More craft and artisanal offerings: The craft beverage trend continues to rise, with unique and limited-edition releases gaining traction. Consumers are seeking one-of-a-kind, artisanal offerings, and beverage brands are eager to meet this demand by employing distinctive brewing techniques. More innovation is expected in this space in the next few years.
  • Personalisation and technology integration: Technology is enhancing the beverage buying experience. Augmented reality (AR), smart shelves and seamless online ordering are becoming more prevalent, bringing personalised customer interactions and convenient access to a wide range of products. Direct-to-consumer (DTC) beverage sales are experiencing significant growth and will be further boosted as technology evolves over the next few years.
  • Sustainability focus: Environmental consciousness will take centre stage in a more meaningful way. Beverage producers are adopting eco-friendly practices, from responsible production and sustainable packaging to ethical distribution. Consumers will increasingly favour brands that prioritise minimising their environmental footprint.

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