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An Overview:

  • It was October 1998. A month before Google was founded, three years before Wikipedia and four years before Firefox. Access to the Internet was by means of 56 kbit/s modems, around 1000 times more slowly than today.
  • The wine lover and graduate IT professional Utz Graafmann used his IT knowledge and programmed a small website for wine lovers, including a wine forum, on which wine lovers could exchange thoughts with other likeminded users, and called the site Wein-Plus.de
  • In order to provide wine merchants with a platform for their commercial success, he created Wine Ring, a virtual department store on the Internet. Today one would refer to this as a multi-shop platform. At the time the offer apparently came at too early a point in time, the number of customers was zero.
  • Despatch of the first Wein-Plus Tasting Package (at the time known as the “regulars’ wine”).
  • The Wein-Plus Web Catalogue goes online in the same year, at the time under the name of "Wine Pilot", with offers (links) related to wine, tourism and more.
  • Introduction of a wine auction platform – however, this is given up again at short notice due to competition from Ebay.
  • Wein-Plus Shopping (known at the time as the Wine Finder) is created, a search engine for wine in hundreds of wine shops, with direct links to the merchants.
  • Subscriptions are launched, and Wein-Plus thus becomes one of the first companies in which the readers are prepared to pay for its online contents.
  • Expansion of the Wein-Plus Wine Guides to include Spain.
  • Unsuccessful start of a trade show concept Vinworld in Würzburg and Berlin.
  • Seven years after the original idea of the “Wine Ring” multi-shop, which was not accepted by the market at the time, Wein-Plus offers the E-Commerce Solution. This time around with greater success: around 120 wine merchants now use this solution for their Internet presence.
  • Moving of the company to larger premises in the Tennenlohe industrial and technology park in Erlangen.
  • Expansion of the Wein-Plus Wine Guide to include additional countries.
  • Wein-Plus changes its status to become a private limited liability company, the owner and sole chief executive is the founder of Wein-Plus, Utz Graafmann.
  • The subscription concept is further developed into the Wein-Plus membership plan.
  • The Wein-Plus Glossary exceeds the landmark of 15 000 entries on the topic of wine, making it without doubt the largest and most comprehensive wine glossary in the world.
  • Launch of Wein-Plus GooWei.de, the search engine for wine topics.
  • Launch of the new website Wein-Plus.eu
  • Launch of Wein-Plus Backstage, the look behind the stage at Wein-Plus, today this is integrated in the Magazine.
  • Wein-Plus Solutions GmbH is founded by Wein-Plus founder Utz Graafmann und Alexander Schreck, a further company in addition to Wein-Plus. This new sister company will facilitate projects such as the Convention and other future projects.
  • First Wein-Plus Convention in Frankfurt.
  • The Wine Forum pays tribute to the increasing success of social media platforms such as Facebook, and is switched off after 15 years for lack of participation.
  • The Wein-Plus takes place very successfully in Munich, with more than 5 000 wine lovers attending.
  • The Benefits World goes online, offering its members exclusive benefits from the world of wine.
  • The Wein-Plus Wine Guide brings together the individual wine guides for each country into a single pan-european wine guide, paving the way with many selection options and filters.
  • Wein-Plus is given a faster, more modern and easily legible design.
  • Wein-Plus establishes a book publishing company, Wein-Plus Edition.
  • The Glossary of Wein-Plus achieves coverage of 21 619 Key Terms, 47 103 Synonyms, 5 375 Translations, 7 857 Pronunciations and 124 202 Cross-references.
  • Relaunch of the Website Wein-Plus.eu, which has been newly designed and programmed from the ground up, based on the latest technology and on the premise of „mobile first“. In spite of the huge volume of contents (approx. 500.000 pages) the new homepage is extremely fast, and now provides a roof for all the brands of Wein-Plus.
  • Further and consistent focus on membership
2020: wein.plus - To the point
With the relaunch of wein.plus, the digital wine platform wein.plus underpins its self-image as "your plus in wine expertise". The plus stands for competence and quality standards in everything that wein.plus offers its members.