Nexus Wine Developing a Fine Wine Solution
The international fine wine sector is becoming increasingly lucrative and valuable for collectors and investors. With private collectors needing to independently store, manage and inventory their wines, Mark Bevan saw a business opportunity and set up NEXUS Wine Collections in 2005 to provide large private collectors with secure, accurate cellarage for their burgeoning inventories, whether for drinking or investment.
Since then NEXUS has grown to become the largest independent inventory management service in the UK, providing collectors of all sizes with the tools and support to manage their collections and buy or sell with whomever they choose.
Increasing the availability of information for customers
Although the company now holds a total asset value of over £100 million worth of stock for clients, it started off with humble beginnings in terms of capturing and sharing data.
Mark Bevan takes up the story: "In the early days, we started off with spreadsheets and then a database built by friends to store all of our information. Even with an initial website, we struggled to cope with the volume of data as the company continued to grow and take on more clients."
"It soon became clear that we needed a better and more robust support service, with a sophisticated database that would allow us to easily and quickly keep track of information."
"Our customer profile is largely mature and those people wanted regular paper reports to update them on their asset values, although an increasing number of others clients also wanted to see their portfolio in real-time."
"Our plan was to give our customers more power yet still make savings in administration time. Although some customers do still want to call up and speak to us about their assets, most straightforward enquiries could be funnelled through an effective website."
Effective IT makes the difference
"With any such growth sector, there are inevitable pressures on logistics and we believe that the point of difference for successful businesses will be their IT - data and online services. We may have started off as service business but as we’ve grown and evolved, we’re now also an IT business," comments Mark Bevan.
Consequently, NEXUS moved forward with plans to re-develop its existing website to create a bespoke system with a customer-friendly front-end and a functionally-rich back-end.
Understanding the NEXUS business
"To help us to successfully move to this new data-driven environment, NEXUS was looking for a development partner that would work with us to continue to develop the offering and that, critically, could manage the whole process as we have no in-house IT resource," continues Mark Bevan.
"Xibis was recommended to us by another wine merchant and the team wasn’t phased at all by the scope of the project. They took the time to specify our particular requirements and we found them to be properly resourced, diligent and responsible, with all of the services that we required under one roof."
Xibis rebuilt a new system for NEXUS to enable online wine inventory and tracking, administration processes and a comprehensive search function to allow customers to log in and search. NEXUS can now run the business out of the new website.
Data drives the business
Mark Bevan explains: "By providing a central repository of data, the new website enables us to more quickly and efficiently synchronise our information to streamline our work with storage operations, wine merchants and international customers."
"With more investors and speculators getting involved with fine wine, they need live valuations. Customers can now get more data when they need it. The system pulls the current valuation of wine each night so that the customer can see what it’s worth at any given moment."
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Oadby, Leicester LE2 5DN
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