Partnership with Alicante City FC

Alicante City FC are pleased to announce a partnership with leading wine and whisky investment specialists London Barrelhouse. The partnership will see London Barrelhouse’s logo adorn the new Alicante City FC football shirts ahead of their first season in 1a Regional.

London Barrelhouse are the perfect match for the club’s ethos with the two parties having a shared emphasis on a focus on a long-term goal. The company also has a collective experience of over 100 years in the asset management industry which reflects that vast wealth of experience in football that the Alicante City FC board and management all possess.

The club are delighted to be working with London Barrelhouse and are looking forward to both parties benefiting from the agreement.
As part of this partnership, we have an exclusive interview with Peter Charalambous, the Director of London Barrelhouse, who shares his views on the company’s new partnership with Alicante City FC, how the two parties can work together in the future and whether football can learn anything from the fine wine and maturing whisky sector.

Hi Peter, how did you first hear about Alicante City FC?
Peter Charalambous: Prior to founding London Barrelhouse, I was the CEO of a stockbroking company in London where the now Chairman of Alicante city fc – Elliot Livesey, was employed as an equity advisor. He moved on and founded soccer smart and my passion for football and our close friendship meant we stayed in touch.

What do you see as the main benefits of sponsoring a truly international side like Alicante City FC are?
PC: Sport can generate significant brand exposure and awareness for London Barrelhouse. Alicante being an international club represents our business perfectly as our audience of investors and collectors are international in nature. Sporting events, football in particular, can be extremely popular and attract a large international audience which reflects our current offering to our ever-growing global client base. Social media and sports are extremely compatible, hence our decision to be sponsors for this season and we hope to Increase our reach and exposure to new clients, customers and businesses.

How do you think London Barrelhouse and Alicante City FC complement each other and how do you think they can help each other going forward?
PC: We complement each other with our truly international reach and feel, along with our shared vision to become major players in our respective fields. On a personal level Elliot and I have a shared passion for competitive sport, especially football, having both played with some of the world’s most famous footballers.

London Barrelhouse encourage a longer-term approach as part of their strategy to building a portfolio which is similar to Alicante City FC’s long-term plan to reach La Liga, do you therefore think it is always important to be invested in a project for the long term?
PC: My experience over 25 years of investing has shown me the most important advantage of long-term investing is to be found in the relationship between the parties having a shared vision. Investments for longer always exhibit lower volatility than those held for shorter periods and almost always make for more rewarding and satisfying returns. The longer you invest, the more likely you will be able to weather low market periods in whatever investment you have. London Barrelhouse and Alicante City having a shared vision for the long term is important for me as like London Barrelhouse, Alicante City have a determination to grow and a business plan in place to execute it.

How important do you think it is that businesses support football clubs and other clubs which can build a community?
PC: Sport at all levels has a responsibility to inspire the next generation. Local sporting clubs are paramount in this process, in particular football clubs. Football clubs around the world can be the life and soul of the local community, offering opportunities, jobs and a community asset for all who are involved. As a result, we are delighted to be involved with Alicante City as they look to grow whilst offering Alicante everything that comes with having a local football club.

Are representatives from the company planning on visiting Alicante to see the club in action?
PC: The plan is to come out this season 100%. We are currently in the process of setting up our first international office in Singapore and this has taken up a lot of our time and resources. However, this will not deter us from coming out to several games this season as we continue to strengthen our relationship with Alicante City FC, its owners and players.

Is there anything you believe football can learn from the fine wine and maturing whisky sector?
PC: Football has become a victim of its own success and the demand for instant results has condemned a lot of clubs into administration and closure. The overriding thing that football can learn from our industry is that with fine wine and maturing whisky – “good things sometimes take time”.

Finally, why should Alicante City FC fans visit
PC: Unlike others in our industry, we offer a truly unique service with our fine and rare collection offering. This helps investors act like an expert and make what is already unique and rare, even more valuable. Alicante City fans should visit in order to see how they can benefit from tax efficient investmets that can be extremely rewarding but also helps them gain an interest and knowledge in a truly global and growing industry.

Why is fine wine easier to value than art and cars?

When it comes to investment, wine, art and cars have often been regarded as ‘pleasurable’ assets. Common perceptions exist that these tangible assets, often put under the same roof, simply serve to diversify a portfolio; they are safe yet less liquid, and if worse comes to worst, can always be enjoyed.

The notable distinctions between them, however, are rarely acknowledged. In an article published last year under the title ‘The Best Investments of 2018? Art, Wine and Cars’, the Wall Street Journal commented: “Who beat the market this year? Investors who like the finer things in life”. Financial newswires occasionally report on the performance of these alternatives through published indices, commonly citing Liv-ex with regards to fine wine and Sotheby’s Mei Moses when art is concerned.

But fine wine as an alternative asset class is not so like art and classic cars – it is easier to value accurately. The price of classic cars, for instance, is often determined by their history, prestige, condition, original features, awards and popularity: a car once driven by someone famous or with an interesting history might demand a higher price. Indices that track the classic car market are often based on auction sale results, such as the K500.

$558,000 for a single bottle of 1945 Romanée-Conti

Maybach Exelero, a one-off high performance car, costs $8 million

When it comes to art, every piece is different, and every copy is considered a replica which cannot command the same price as the original. Some argue that art, even sculptures and paintings, is ephemeral, which is part of the joy in collecting and owning it. It can also take decades for the same original piece of art to reappear on the market, making valuation challenging despite the emergence of art indices. Estimations are often the norm and can be based on the auction value of other works by the same artist, as well as demand, liquidity, activity of the art dealers and market data.

Salvator Mundi by Leonardo da Vinci (c. 1500) is the most expensive painting ever sold as of 2019 for $450.3 million

Wine is a very distinctive category in that sense. Each year, producers make many bottles of the same wine. Some, like top Bordeaux, is made in significant quantities. Even the smallest producers will make several hundred cases of the same wine each year. As a result, the same products are often available simultaneously from retailers around the world, and change hands frequently. Rare old bottles such as Romanée Conti 1945, which broke a record in October becoming the most expensive wine in the world, are the exception rather than the rule. The vast majority of fine wine – collectible bottles that are built to age – is far easier to value than ‘unicorn’ bottles like these.

The chart below shows trading activity for Lafite Rothschild 2006 over five years. The red markers represent trades of the wine on Liv-ex. The dark blue line is its Market Price, which is widely used for valuations. As you can see, it tracks transaction prices very closely.

These factors – production volumes, multiple traders, availability and data – make it much easier to arrive at accurate valuations for fine wine than art or classic cars.