As we go into the festive party season, I was so happy to catch up with Katherine Jones for this month’s interview. Founder of the award winning ThinK Wine Group – this is a specialist brand that has developed a prosecco and sparkling rose with reduced sugar and calories, but without any compromise on taste. Quality and taste are paramount for Katherine, as is sustainability, and all of their wines are organic and vegan. I wanted to know how it all began and exactly what makes these delicious ThinK wines so unique.
First of all, can you tell us about the ThinK Wine Group ethos and how it all began?
My background is in influencer marketing and e-commerce sales. I always knew I wanted my own product-led business, but I wanted it to be something I was passionate about and that would have longevity. I have always loved wine! I have been to so many wine destinations, vineyard trips and wine-tasting events.
I have always struggled with my weight and found that attending lots of events with ‘prosecco on arrival’ meant I was rapidly gaining weight; so I began to wonder if it would be possible to make wine with less sugar, and particularly bubbly as I knew the influencers I worked with would absolutely love it and drink it themselves too, which would be helpful for the marketing. When searching for lower sugar or lower calorie wines I noticed that you could only ever find them if they were low alcohol too, but I wanted to retain the ABV while getting rid of all the other nasties! So ThinK Wine Group was born.
What is it that makes ThinK Wines so unique compared to other brands?
We have recently been certified B Corp, so we are huge on sustainability practices. We are also a premium and high-quality product in the prosecco world, one in which there are very few as it is known as a mass-produced and generally cheap product. Our product is not white labelled – it is made specifically for us, with our own recipe, and it cannot be found anywhere else.
Can you tell us a little about the process for creating your healthier and sustainable sparkling wines?
Our product is not mass-produced. It is a small family-run vineyard in Treviso, Italy – our winery cares for the grapes so much so that there is no ‘dosage’ necessary to make the wine palatable.
What do you think it is that makes wine – compared to other alcoholic drinks – so popular?
There are some studies that suggest wine has health benefits – but at the very least, it is not as bad for you as many other alcoholic beverages. It’s also very delicious and there’s always a wine to suit everyone. Wine education is also very enjoyable.
Hardest challenge you’ve had to face?
A fraudulent investor trying to invest in my business, our wine agent stealing stock and a member of staff stealing £14k. I have had a fair few challenges …
Bouncing back from all of the above and continuing to grow a successful business. Resilience is key to success.
Who has been your greatest inspiration?
My dad – there are many things about my dad that I don’t enjoy (ha ha!) – but his work ethic has been second to none, and I have always followed in his driven footsteps to achieve above and beyond what people see to be possible.
Best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
If it’s a maybe – it’s a no.
I’m passionate about women supporting women in business – what advice would you give to emerging female entrepreneurs?
Be resilient. Don’t give up at the first hurdle, because there will be many. You can do anything you want as long as you are driven and consistent.
Top beauty ‘must haves’ in your makeup bag?
I am the least ‘beauty’ person ever!
And finally, your favourite quote to live by?
If you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life!