Our History

AMKA – the family-owned company

The hobby that grew into a business

The history of AMKA started in 1978 in Randers, Denmark where Anna-Marie Søndergaard began importing wine as a hobby. The passion for wine rapidly developed into a successful business, so in 1980 her husband Karsten Søndergaard also joined the business. She named the company “AMKA” after her own name Anna-Marie and her husband’s name KArsten.

The Chilean export adventure

The company really took off in 1987, when AMKA introduced the first Chilean wine on the Danish market. When the purchasing department tasted wine from the Chilean winery Santa Rita for the first time, they were blown away.

Shortly after AMKA had reached an agreement with Santa Rita, they got one of the greatest awards in the wine business. Medalla Real Cabernet Sauvignon, vintage 1984, was voted as the best wine at Gault Millau’s world-famous wine olympiad in 1987 in Paris. The French were beaten on their home ground, which reverberated around the world and it turned out to be the beginning of Chile’s export adventure and AMKA’s success.

AMKA brought the first South African wine to Denmark

In March 1992 the trade restrictions caused by apartheid was cancelled, and it became legal to trade with South Africa again. Until then South Africa was the only producer in the world of quality wines, which was not represented on the Danish market.

March 20, 1992 the first container of 24,000 bottles from among other Nederburg and Klein Constantia arrived in Randers – just a few hours after the Danish royal decree was signed. Months in advance, AMKA had prepared for the abolition and until then the South African wines were stored in Hamburg.

The first shipment of wines was sold out in a very short time – the Danes loved it.

 

AMKA today

AMKA is still a family-owned company and today it also includes Frank Søndergaard, the son, who joined the company in 1992.  Since the beginning in 1978 AMKA has expanded rapidly and today AMKA Group consists of more than 160 passionate employees in 20 individual companies in 10 countries.

It makes AMKA Group on of Nothern Europe’s most essential and influential independent importers of quality wine, beer and spirits.

Milestones

Creation of AMKA I/S by Anna Marie Søndergaard and Karsten Søndergaard

1978

Vinlageret Randers A/S is taken over (Denmark)

1980

AMKA Finans A/S (Denmark)

1990

Frank Søndergaard joins the management

1992

AMKA AB (Sweden)

1997

AMKA acquires 50 % of Quinta do Pégo S.A. (Portugal)

2000

AMKA OY/AB (Finland)

2002

Best Selection A/S (Denmark)

2002

AMKA acquires the remaining 50 % of Quinta do Pégo S.A.

2003

AMKA AS (Norway)

2004

UAB AMKA (Lithuania)

2005

AMKA EHF (Iceland)

2006

SIA AMKA (Latvia)

2008

AMKA GmbH (Germany)

2009

The hotel at Quinta do Pégo opens after a total renovation

2009

Jysk Vin ApS becomes a part of AMKA (Denmark)

2010

Ewine ApS (Sweden)

2010

Wine 4 You AS (Norway)

2010

Skywine (Finland)

2012

Beer Enthusiast (Norway)

2012

AMKA Sp. Z.o.o. (Poland)

2012

Easy Tap ApS (Denmark)

2012

Wine Tank Holding ApS (Denmark)

2012

Vin300 ApS (Denmark)

2012

Beer Enthusiast (Sweden)

2012

Merger of AMKA Horeca and Best Selection A/S → Best Selection A/S Denmark

2014

Beer Enthusiast Denmark (Part of Best Selection A/S)

2014

Beer Enthusiast (Finland)

2014

Best Match Wine (Denmark)

2015

Beer Enthusiast (Poland)

2015

Beer Enthusiast (Lithuania)

2016