2nd Annual

2nd Annual Spirit Sales + Branding Conference
Craft spirits and emerging spirits brands are bringing vibrancy and creativity to the alcohol world. Spirits enthusiasts today are seeking new brands with a compelling story, attractive brand identity, and abundant availability. This event will bring together leaders from craft distilleries, brand owners, importers, distributors, brokers, retailers, compliance consultants, e-commerce specialists, marketing and branding experts, and industry analysts to share insights, form new partnerships, and network with other industry leaders. Having great liquid is only half the battle… next, get it into the consumer’s glass.

Preliminary Schedule

The conference agenda is in development, but you can rest assured we will have the industry’s leading experts. Our agenda is “panel-heavy”, where we avoid sales pitches and engage in great conversations. Please do not hesitate to email Nick Cook to suggest a speaker or topic for the agenda. 

7:00 am
Exhibitor Set Up
Exhibit Hall
9:00 am
Opening Remarks
  • • Nick Cook, Conference Host, OnTrend Concepts
Conference Room
9:15 am
Spirits Data Trends: On vs Off-Premise
  • • Andrew Hummel, Client Solutions Director, CGA by NielsenIQ
  • • Kaleigh Theriault, Beverage Alcohol Thought Leadership Manager, NielsenIQ
Conference Room
10:30 am
Morning Networking Break
Exhibit Hall
11:00 am
How to Partner with Your Distributor [Panel]
  • • Kyle McHugh, Director of Brand Advocacy, Samson & Surrey
  • • Michael Bender, President – Wholesale, Ole Smoky Distillery
  • • John Oliver, National Trade Marketing Director - Emerging Spirits, Breakthru Beverage Group
Conference Room
11:45 am
Effective Digital Ads on Entrepreneur Budget
  • • Bryan Monteleone, Co-Founder, Drinkubator
  • • Peteris Freimanis, VP of Sales, AdAdapated
  • • Nathalie Maltez, Papa's Pilar
Conference Room
12:20 pm
Case Study: Gray Duck Spirits
Conference Room
12:30 pm
Networking Lunch
Exhibit Hall
1:45 pm
Know Your Customer: Data Collection and Monetization
  • • Bryan Monteleone, Co-Founder, Drinkubator
  • • George Haenisch, Head of Partner Alliances, AnyRoad
Conference Room
2:30 pm
Legal Compliance Considerations When 1.) Entering into New Markets, and 2.) Conducting Advertising & Marketing Activities to Promote Your Brand
  • • Ashley Hanke, Attorney, Malkin Law
Conference Room
3:00 pm
Afternoon Networking Break
Exhibit Hall
3:30 pm
Elements of a Brand: Packaging & Story [Panel]
  • • Mike Howard, President, Altos Planos Collective [M]
  • • Nicola Nice, Founder, Pomp & Whimsy
  • • Kate Johnston, Sr. Marketing Director, Endless West
Conference Room
4:15 pm
Leveraging E-Commerce [Panel]
  • • Mara Smith, Founder, Inspiro Tequila
  • • Mark Crist, SVP of Growth, Bottlecapps
  • • Megan Saunsen, Digital & eCommerce Content Manager, Breakthru Beverage Group
  • • Andi Whiskey, Agency Director, Twist & Tailor
Conference Room
5:00 pm
Happy Hour Reception
Exhibit Hall
6:30 pm
Conference Ends - Exhibitor Pack Out
Exhibit Hall

Quick Facts


Registration Fee

Conference Speakers

Michael Bender

President – Wholesale
Ole Smoky Distillery
Tricia Constable

Tricia Constable

Director Of Operations & Marketing
Papa’s Pilar Rum

Nick Cook

VP of Spirits
OnTrend Concepts
Mark Crist

Mark Crist

SVP of Growth
Peteris Freimanis

Peteris Freimanis

VP of Sales
George Haenisch

George Haenisch

Head of Partner Alliances
Ashley Hanke

Ashley Hanke

Malkin Law, P.A.
Mike Howard

Mike Howard

Altos Planos Collective
Andrew Hummel

Andrew Hummel

Client Solutions Director
Kate Johnston

Kate Johnston

Sr. Marketing Director
Endless West

Kyle McHugh

Director of Brand Advocacy
Samson & Surrey
Bryan Monteleone

Bryan Monteleone

Dr. Nicola Nice

Nicola Nice

Pomp & Whimsy
John Oliver

John Oliver

National Trade Marketing Director – Emerging Spirits
Breakthru Beverage Group
Megan Saunsen

Megan Saunsen

Digital & eCommerce Manager
Breakthru Beverage
Mara Smith

Mara Smith

Inspiro Tequila
Kaleigh Theriault

Kaleigh Theriault

Beverage Alcohol Thought Leadership Manager
Andi Whiskey

Andi Whiskey

Agency Director
Twist & Tailor
Fairmont Austin - Queen Room

Conference Venue | Swissôtel Chicago

Designed by renowned Chicago architect Harry Weese, Swissotel Chicago is an award-winning luxury hotel overlooking the Chicago River and Lake Michigan, and just steps from the Magnificent Mile. The distinctive 4-diamond, all-glass hotel offers spectacular wrap-around views from Navy Pier to Millennium Park, and offers spotless European-style service.

Discounted Room Rate

$199 per night

Swissôtel Chicago • 323 East Upper Wacker Drive • Chicago, IL 60601 • 888-737-9477

Event Sponsorships

All sponsorships include the following items. Other benefits are specific to the sponsorship level.

Interested in non-exhibiting sponsorship opportunity?
Contact Nick Cook at nick@ontrendconcepts.com

Notebook Sponsor - Limit 1

After compiling inspirations and ideas from the conference, attendees will bring their notebooks home – branded with your logo on it (and ours too!). On top of that, you can include an information card about you and your services inside each notebook.

Reception Sponsor - Limit 1

Your company logo in each attendee’s souvenir tasting shot glass and recognition for sponsoring the reception! Own a glass company? Show off your newest tasting glassware by sponsoring our reception.

Coffee Sponsor - Limit 1

Signage at the coffee stations and coffee mugs co-branded with OnTrend Concepts provided to all attendees. A drinkware provider can demonstrate the quality of their products by providing a variety of mugs to hold everyone’s coffee!

Lanyard Sponsor - Limit 1

What better way to get your brand in front of everyone than have them wearing your logo for the entire day on their conference lanyard!

Kick-Off Sponsor - Limit 1

Ideal for building your brand and guaranteed to get your stuff in the hands of every attendee. With this sponsorship you can put an information packet (and perhaps a giveaway) at every seat in the room before we kick off the day!

Lunch Sponsor - Limit 1

Similar to the Kick-Off Sponsor, this sponsorship not only gets credit for a first class lunch, but it also enables the sponsor to put their information packets out at every seat while out attendees are at lunch, guaranteeing that they’ll take a look at it when they get back to their seats!

Case Study Sponsor - Only 1 remaining!

Do you have a new innovation or success story demonstrating the effectiveness of your product or service? The Case Study Sponsorship gives you up to 5 minutes to address the event attendees from the stage, to tell them a bit about your solution and what challenges they address. It is a perfect way to give them a taste and then encourage those interested to stop by your exhibit space.

Exhibiting Sponsor - Limit 30


Our Sponsors

Mother Murphy's
Pilar Rum
Heaven's Door
Gray Duck
el Restaurante
Spirits Sales & Marketing Digest