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Selling Wine and Whisky in the current COVID-19 environment explained.

COVID-19 Operational Information For Sellers

Wickman’s have always been an online marketplace for the buying and selling of fine wine and whisky, technologically equipped to operate under a variety of situations. Our servers are fully hardened and scalable to be able to handle any likely stress scenario.

Our staff have always used the latest technology and techniques to value, catalogue and prepare your wine and whisky for auction.

If you have wine or whisky to sell, specialist auctions offer you, the seller, a targeted audience to achieve the best possible outcome in this challenging environment. Auctions offer the most reliable way of leveraging the highest value from any goods.

Remember, whilst there may be a glut at present, bottles of wine and whisky are eventually opened and consumed, decreasing the volume available whilst increasing the perceived value. Good, popular wine and whisky will always maintain market value while it is drinkable.

To get a valuation please fill in the form on the selling wines page.

PLEASE NOTE: Whilst we are managing different shifts and schedules for our warehouse there may also be a temporary, minor change of days when the auction opens and closes. We apologise in advance if this causes any inconvenience.


Opinion; The changing landscape of wine & whisky values in a Pandemic

Updated 6th August 2020

A major segment of auction buyers in the hospitality and travel industry suffered a massive blow earlier this year, they were closed overnight and stripped of large portions of income. The entire supply chain from wineries & distilleries through to distributors, bars, restaurants, events, casinos and through to the consumer and private collector was in chaos for some time.

The easing of restrictions in June introduced other issues and now major buyers and sellers of wine and whisky that had opened have now closed or are on standby, cautious until they to see what happens in their own state.

There was and will continue to be for the foreseeable future, a glut of current release wines and spirits flooding the market which is likely to impact previous vintages as well.

Looking forward however, there are many interruptions to the supply chain which will have a huge impact for next years vintage and then possibly a number of years where wine is in short supply. This article about wine supply chains on Winemag.com (and other articles in the trade section) gives an insight into what may happen over the next few years.

The good news for sellers is that many private buyers (and numerous restaurants in Adelaide, Perth and Brisbane) appear to be stocking up on recent mature vintages.

The COVID-19 effect on different wine categories

Current and future releases

We believe a glut will be around for some time, the entire supply chain backed up, segmented and each competing with the other to find non-traditional buyers, previous regulatory barriers preventing such sales temporarily lifted. The market will be unable and unwilling to absorb such a large volume in so short a time. Wines in this classification typically come from wineries, distributors, restaurants, bars and the like. As a rule of thumb you can expect to value these types of bottles at wholesale less a discount for perceived quality and prior marketability multiplied by quantity available and less a large COVID-19 discount.

We expect this to reverse around June 2021 (going from a glut to a shortage and price increase) if supply chains remain seized up for the next 6 months AND the predicted number of small wineries close, which will reduce the available new stock more.

Mature wines, not generally available except at auction

Larger quantities of more mature stock is finding its way to auction now and likely to increase for the foreseeable future as more and more people decide to sell their wine for the best price they can get to pay off accumulating debt. Depending on the number of buyers coming back into the market we will likely see a marginal dip in prices over time which should firm up within the year.

Iconic and Collectible wine and whisky

Depending on the item, this category is seeing some degree of volatility, not tremendous, but these items seem to be holding their perceived value within historical averages. The perceived value over the next few months could go either way, with a lot of cash looking for a home, highly priced alternative investments may fit the bill, however, a lot of indebted collectors may also be looking to lighten the load of their cellars to be able to sleep at night.

Mark Wickman
Wine and Whisky Auctioneer