With more than $31 billion in sales in 2017, craft producers are looking for guidance on how to capitalize on the market growth and looking to overcome the biggest roadblock in this industry: how to distribute in a highly regulated marketplace. This is why the 2018 Craft Beverage Expo is taking independent and small batch producers step-by-step through the distribution stages during its big educational component: The Craft Beverage Distribution Conference.

Taking place at the Omni Louisville in Louisville, Ken., on Dec. 4-6, the CBE is a trade show dedicated to independent beverage producers and addresses each point along the product distribution lifecycle — from locating distribution partners to capitalizing on retail success to expanding into new markets.

“CBE has truly listened to the needs of the industry and have curated an event that will deliver actual solutions and strategies to put each attendee on a solid path of success,” said Kellie Shevlin, Executive Director of Craft Beverage Expo. “The dynamic line-up of presenters joining us for CBE 2018 includes the industry’s leading experts and thought leaders, each with a unique business perspective on the value of a distribution strategy, and each committed to providing answers that help solve our business challenges.”

Each day will build on the previous day’s sessions, providing a complete overview of the distribution process. The lifecycle will start by teaching attendees the tools needed to build relationships with distributors, develop distribution strategies, identify growth and expansion goals, and will wrap with retail strategies for retail success.

These industry leading keynote speakers have each mastered their own hurdles in the beverage industry and will share their personal and professional insights:

Keynote Session: How to Win in the Retail Space — Eli Aguilera,Vice President – Spirits & Beer Divisions and Concierge Sales, Total Wine & More

Keynote Session: Survival in the New Age of Independent Brands — Brian Rosen, Chief Operating Officer, BevStrat

Keynote Session: The Past Present and Future of the Middle Tier — Cheryl Durzy, Founder and CEO, LibDib

Visit the CBE 2018 site for a complete list of speakers, session schedule and compelling session topics.