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Tuscany Distributors of Illinois

Michael Mangini

Michael Mangini

Ernest Hemingway once wrote, “Wine is the most civilized thing in the world.” Michael Mangini wholeheartedly agrees.

When you’re sipping a Chianti at your favorite local ristorante, chances are good that it was made available by Mangini’s company, Tuscany Distributors of Illinois. After all, Mangini’s company distributes about 200,000 bottles of wine a year in the Chicago area alone.

“We are the exclusive distributor for 230 different Italian wines,” Mangini explains. “Our wines come from all over Italy: Sicily, Lombardia, Venice, Naples, Bari and, of course, Tuscany.”

Mangini was introduced to the wine business by a friend who owns Tuscany Distributors USA in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

“I was visiting Florida and my friend showed me what he was doing and I was intrigued,” recalls Mangini. “I love wine and started tasting their wines and thought I would take a chance.” He and two partners formed TDI.

For Mangini, starting his own business was nothing new. Mangini’s father, Robert, emigrated from Genoa, Italy, in the 1940s, and was an entrepreneur from an early age. In 1968, he started Accounts Receivable Management Ltd., a collection agency.

“My father was an entrepreneur,” Mangini explains. “He was always self employed. He’s the one that showed me how to run a business.”

When Michael’s father passed away in 1997, he took over ARM and 10 years later went into the wine business.

“We started small and now have nine sales representatives, three drivers, a secretary and myself,” says Mangini. TDI has its own trucks and they do all of their own deliveries.

“Our customer service is second to none,” Mangini proclaims. “If a customer is running out of wine and they forgot to order it and they need it the next day, we get it to them.

The hardest part of his business is shipping: “Making sure the wine stays cool, getting it through customs and to our warehouse in West Chicago,” he details. “We can’t tell our clients we are out of wine!”

And the best part? “We get to taste the wine!” he enthuses.

Mangini maintains a competitive edge by keeping overhead low, allowing him to cut costs by up to 25 percent: savings that he passes along to his customers.

“The competition is stiff,” Mangini notes. “We offer quality wine at competitive price, and we do a great job of supporting our clientele.”

For more, visit http://tuscanydistributors.com/illinois.

About Lissa Druss Christman

Nine-time Emmy award winner Lissa Druss Christman is a veteran communications strategist specializing in public affairs, crisis communications and public relations. She also brings more than two decades of experience as a news and sports television producer to bear on behalf of her clients. She is the chairman of the board of directors of The Jarrett Payton Foundation, a member of the National Italian American Foundation and a volunteer with the Joint Civic Committee of Italian Americans and the Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii. Lissa spent more than a decade with Bears Care, the charitable arm of the Chicago Bears.