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Amethyst Price List
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The LCBO in Ontario
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The LCBO Supplier Resources
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The Vintages
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Personal Bio & Expertise
My name is Laura Dijana Higgins and I am a certified Sommelier with multiple related credentials who has worked in the Hospitality, Food & Beverage, and Liquor Industries in three provinces across Canada since 1980.

In 1993, while I was managing the wine shop of a micro-sized organic estate winery in British Columbia, Alberta privatized their retail liquor industry.  Amethyst was born to capitalize on Alberta's new and dynamic open market. Working from our passions and strengths, Amethyst focused exclusively on Canadian premium estate VQA wines from the Niagara Peninsula and Okanagan Valley. Eventually, we were encouraged to diversify into Italian and New Zealand wines through our supplier relationships.

Amethyst's success led us back to Southern Ontario which is the largest market within Canada to distribute.  "If you can make it here...you can make it anywhere" was the thought that was going through the back of my mind.  But transition from an open system to a monopoly required more than just passion to sell wine.  Working at several of the top agencies in Toronto from 2001 until 2008 gave me the knowledge that I needed to strike back out on my own with all of the necessary skills and insights about how each channel operates within the LCBO so that we can build solid brands in a highly competitive environment.

Today, as the CEO of Amethyst, I bring a wealth of education and experience which is balanced by a sense of proportion about how to effectively operate a focused business within a huge industry. Decisions are made with integrity and passion intact with the goal of developing  long term prosperous relationships. 

Currently under consideration is a plan to re-open Amethyst in B.C. and Alberta, as well as, expanding into Quebec (2012-2013).
Education
International Sommelier Guild Diploma (2007)
University of Calgary Degree - Minor in Marketing & Management (2003)
George Brown College Hotel Management (1988)
Mohawk College Food & Beverage Management (1988)

Work Experience
Euro vintage International, Vintages Manager
        (LCBO retail store service & Vintages/Classics tenders)
Diamond Estates, Wines & Spirits, GTA East Account Manager
        (LCBO retail store service & Direct Sales)
Rogers & Company, GTA Sales Representative
        (Licensee Sales)
Grapebrands, Consignment Specialist
        (Licensee & Private Customer sales)
Halpern Enterprises, Sales Representative
        (Vintages, Consignment, Private Ordering, and VQA Craft Wine Program)

Winery Experience
Hainle Vineyards Estate Winery - Organic (Okanagan, B.C. 1992-1995)

Business Operations
Amethyst Wine Agency Inc. (Ontario 2008-Present)
Amethyst Wine Agency Inc. (Western Canada 1993-2001)
Emerald Food & Beverage Management Consulting

Current Staffing
Christina Mark:
Personal Assistant
Claudio Sicoli: Ottawa In-Store Tasting and Merchandizing.
Teresa MacDonald:
In-Store Tasting Coordinator, Sommelier, Private Client Sales
Anthony Haynes: Bookkeeping
LauraPeople interested in working with Amethyst should send their contact information so that we may discuss potential opportunities in your area.
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All sales work is paid out 100% commission as a sub-contractor and is suitable for part time employment only.
All in-store sampling is paid out at a starting rate of $15/hour+ commensurate with certification and experience.
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Sales & Sampling territories required: Ottawa, Kingston, Niagara, GTA, '905', Cottage Country.
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Port Wine specialist to service Yacht Clubs in the summer and Ski Hills in the winter.
Community Ambassadors to implement direct marketing of ethnic brands: St. Lucia, Sri Lanka, Mumbai/Goa, Croatia, etc...
 
 
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