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Small Business Digest


Loyalty, Integrity And Italian Wine Leads To A Profitable Bottom Line

Sicilian born Leonardo LoCascio had an intuition that Americans would come to know and enjoy Italy’s ‘La Dolce Vita,” or sweet life.

It was this foresight that led him to capture his piece of the American Dream over twenty-five years ago with the creation of Winebow Inc.  (, which is now America’s largest importer & distributor of fine Italian wines.


Luminaries of the wine world Leonardo LoCascio and Kermit Lynch share a toast at Winebow's Vintner's Harvest on Tuesday, September 18th at the Skylight Room in Manhattan

In 1980, Mr. LoCascio left a career in corporate finance to become a wine entrepreneur, giving up a position as a vice president at Citibank to launch Winebow.  Prior to his four years at Citibank, he worked in corporate finance and as a management consultant.

For 25 years now, LoCascio has been selecting wines for his portfolio with the same care he once brought to corporate finance. 

Along the way he has earned a reputation for uncovering the best wines of Italy, often looking beyond the obvious wine regions of Tuscany, Piedmont and the Veneto to discover hidden gems worthy of importation.  He is especially proud of having introduced Americans to the great wines of Italy’s southern regions.

LoCascio’s blend of Italian passion and American business acumen continues to fuel his company’s success, underwriting a business formula that hinges on Winebow’s fundamental principle: Quality wines produced by small to medium size, family run estates.

LoCascio has divested part of his stake in Winebow to embark on a campaign of ‘buy & build,’ acquiring distributorships in key markets. 

He has become the only importer & distributor to be vertically integrated; in late 2005 LoCascio introduced his own wine from his estate in Tuscany, Poggio al Tesoro.

The strategy to divest was as much a personal decision as it was a business decision.  Using his blend of “La Dolce Vida” and American business innovation, LoCascio has maintained both the integrity of his portfolio and the secure futures of his employees, some of which have partnered with him for several years. 

In a world where value is often measured in the numbers of business transactions and little else, LoCascio reminds industry insiders that loyalty and integrity can be just as important to your bottom line.

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