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Meet Melania Spagnoli of Impero Wine Distributors Texas in West Loop

Today we’d like to introduce you to Melania Spagnoli.

Melania, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Since my earliest memories from my childhood, I have always had a passion for wine. My grandparents from both sides used to make their own wine. After a Bachelor and Master degree in Business and Economics, I decided to turn my passion into work. In May 2014 I earned my Sommelier designation from the ‘Associazione Italiana Sommelier’ and then I moved to Houston with my husband. I started working as a sales rep for a couple Wine Distribution Companies, building up my network of accounts and sales experience.

In the beginning of 2017, I received a proposal from an Italian Winery that was willing to open a Wine Distribution in Texas, focusing not only on their wines, but on wines from all over Italy. For me, being Italian and 30 years old, that was the opportunity of my life: running a company that could import and distributes wines from my homeland, promoting products I strongly believe in, everything I could ever hope for!

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Shortly after our opening, Houston was hit by Harvey. Our warehouse got flooded – what a great start! (lol)

Luckily we did not suffer any damage to our products and we feel blessed for that. We also got wonderful friends and supporters that helped us with maintenance, so we were able to get back on track as soon as possible. The hurricane slowed us down a bit, but we got back to work right away and since then our growth has been fast and stable.

Impero Wine Distributors Texas, Inc. – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Impero Wine Distributors is a group of Wine Wholesalers present in 16 different States in the U.S. We import and distribute wines from all over Italy and our portfolio covers most of the Italian wine regions. We focus on boutique, family-owned producers and we also have a private label of high quality for our house wines that make us unique.

Impero Wine Distributors Texas is the first and only branch of the group in Texas. The Lone Star State is a great market for wine distribution and there are plenty of competitors. Our strength that makes us different from the other distributors is two-fold: we are part of a big group, and that allows us to have a great purchasing power. And at the same time, we are structured as a local, family-owned business, so that we give the best customer service to our customers. It is very important for us to have a team of professionals that are skilled and knowledgeable on wine.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
For sure, being chosen to run an Italian wine distribution company has been the most important step of my career. Moving forward from a position of account manager to a general manager role made me grow both as a person and as a professional. I am enjoying all the steps of our growth and I am happy to face all the ups and downs related to it. We are a team of young professionals whom have been given the trust of an important investor, and I am proud of what we are becoming day after day.

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