• Kiwi winemakers Tim Lightbourne and Rob Cameron’s innovative and fresh approach to wine is receiving international acclaim
  • The duo behind popular brand Invivo have been shortlisted for the Wine Person of the Year at the Wine Enthusiast Awards – known as the Oscars of the global wine industry
  • The only New Zealand and International company to be featured in the Person of the Year shortlist
  • Invivo’s A-lister collaborations, disruptive stunts, and unconventional marketing activity have seen the brand make headlines around the world

Auckland, New Zealand: The creative Kiwi minds behind the breakaway success of local beverage producer, Invivo & Co, Tim Lightbourne and Rob Cameron, are receiving international recognition for their disruptive approach, with the duo shortlisted for the Wine Persons of the Year award at the 23rd Annual Wine Enthusiast Awards.

Since its launch in 2008, Invivo has been making waves both domestically and abroad. Founded on the premise that strong branding and a fun approach to marketing coupled with a quality product could cut through the noise in the wine industry, Lightbourne and Cameron have successfully taken a local brand to the world.

Invivo’s distinct approach to A-list partnerships, collaborating with the likes of Graham Norton and Sarah Jessica Parker to not just promote, but actively participate in the development of their own unique wines, has seen sales skyrocket across international markets.

Despite challenging market conditions, Invivo has experienced a 45% growth in the last 12 months. Its wine brands are now listed in some of the world’s largest retailers, including a new listing in the US with Kroger – from next month over 1,500 of their stores will be stocking Invivo wine. Global sales will top over 350,000 cases, up from 5000 cases when Invivo first launched back in 2008.

It is this refreshing approach to wine marketing that has caught the eye of judges says Adam Strum, Editor of Wine Enthusiast: “In the 23rdanniversary of Wine Enthusiast’s Wine Star Awards, we are pleased to nominate Invivo’s Tim Lightbourne and Rob Cameron as 2022 finalists in the ‘Person of the Year’ category. The annual awards honour the most influential members of the global wine, spirits and beverage industry, and this nomination recognizes the innovative approach from both New Zealand winery co-founders.”

The Wine Enthusiasts Wine Star Awards is an annual ceremony founded to acknowledge individuals and companies making outstanding contributions to the wine and alcohol beverage world. Considered the ‘Oscars of the wine industry’ the nominees reflect the individuals and businesses that are making an impact globally.

There is no award entry for Wine Enthusiasts; judges select winemakers they see as most deserving. Previous winners include Bill Newlands, CEO of the world’s largest wine company, Constellation, and Joseph E Gallo, from Gallo – the largest privately owned winery in the world.

“When Rob and I first got together to talk wine in a London bar, we knew we wanted to create a wine company that sets itself apart from the saturated wine and alcohol market. We’ve developed a business that takes a fun approach – different from the pre-established ‘refined’ wine industry that we knew. From protesting shipping delays in a dinghy to launching the world’s first winery airline, it’s this mindset that piqued the interest of celebrity partners, saw us grow in popularity with consumers, and helped us to generate recognition from the likes of Wine Enthusiast,” says Lightbourne.

Cameron adds, “It is an absolute honour to be shortlisted as Wine Person of the Year at the Wine Enthusiast Awards. We’re a wine company from the corner of the world, punching above our weight when it comes to global recognition and impact. We’re thrilled that the work we’ve done with Invivo made a mark on the industry and has continued to be recognised.”

The 23rd Anniversary Wine Star Awards will take place on January 30, 2023, at The Westin St. Francis in San Francisco.