Alberto Fernández, the much respected wine merchant who had built Torres China founded by Spanish wine giant Familia Torres as one of the most influential wine importers in China, has announced his departure from the company after serving 23 in his role, Vino Joy News has learned.
Speaking to Vino Joy News, Fernández confirmed the news and will officially finish up his term by the end of 2022. Torres’ North Asia and Oceania Area Manager Carlos Garcia Mangado will succeed Fernandez.
Fernández arrived in China in 2000 at a time when the country’s wine market was still in its infancy. Back then, as he recalls there’s still a fair amount of “naivety” in an interview with us. Like the country’s economic transformation in the past 20 years, its wine market also fast-tracked growth.
Arriving just three years after Torres China was founded in 1997 at the tender age of 26, Fernández managed to turn a loss-making business into a profitable operation within 2 years, and today Torres China is among the oldest and biggest wine importers and distributors in China, representing over 400 wines from 13 countries.
“It is a long long way back I started building Torres China business. After 23 years outliving all my competitors, the Torres family and I decided it is the moment to step down and let a new generation to take the command,” Fernández told Vino Joy News.
A Barcelona native and a seasoned China hand, he hinted that he has a few projects underway after closing the chapter with Torres China. “As for my future, I wish to focus only in the premium segment, with my personal stamp of Spain,” he confided.
Fernández’s impressive track record at Torres China and his contribution to growing China’s wine market has not gone unnoticed. He was recently awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Civil Merit (Spanish: Orden del Mérito Civil) by the King of Spain for promoting Spanish culture. The award recognizes the civic virtue of officers in the service of the Nation, as well as extraordinary service by Spanish and foreign citizens for the benefit of Spain.
“I was awarded with the Cross of the Civil Merit by The King of Spain for promoting Spanish Culture abroad, and my dream is to continue to do this and only this in Asia,” he enthused.