What is the difference between LibDib and a Pay-to-Play distribution company? 

Pay-to-Play distribution company is a business that offers distribution clearing for its import and back office clients. Examples of these Pay-to-Play distributors include Park Street, MHW and American Spirits Exchange (ASE). In order to utilize their distribution services, Makers must pay a retainer or minimum for other services that can start at several thousand dollars per month. These minimums are owed to the Pay-to-Play distributor even if the Maker sells nothing the entire month. 

Pay-to-Play distributors retain distribution licenses in some states that overlap with LibDib’s markets. They can legally fulfill orders to retailers and restaurants. However the similarities between Pay-to-Play distributors and LibDib end there. 

  • LibDib’s main business is distribution. Pay-to-Play distributors businesses offer distribution, but it is not their primary focus. Customer service to Buyers is not their specialty because they do not make a lot of money from it (Pay-to-Play distributors utilize a flat rate fee vs. mark-up or margin). LibDib is entirely focused on making our Buyers happy. So we will work hard and communicate regularly to make sure the distribution experience is smooth for all. And while you pay a little more for it with mark-up vs. flat rate, it is a better experience for all. 

  • Makers can utilize LibDib for distribution without any upfront costs. Outside of state-by-state permit/licensing requirements, it does not cost LibDib Makers anything upfront to be on LibDib. LibDib has a Silver or Gold Plan for extra services (sell sheets, advertising, boosted search, sales presentations and opportunities for e-commerce retailer placements); however, all Makers can utilize the marketplace for free. 

  • LibDib is a two-sided marketplace where products are available for discovery and purchase by Buyers with a seamless shopping cart experience. All the benefits of an e-commerce platform (lists, favorites, recommendation engines etc) are included on LibDib.  We have hundreds of Buyers coming to the site every week to seek and shop for products. Pay-to-Play distributors do not have an e-commerce marketplace for Buyers in which the content is managed by Makers. Distribution is not their main revenue source so an investment in a great e-commerce experience for Buyers is not a priority for them like it is for LibDib.

  • LibDib works with all the major chains in our licensed markets. For Gold Plan Members, we will assist with paperwork and submission. We manage the process from A to Z, ensuring that all the i’s are dotted and the t’s are crossed. It takes an extra level of service when working with the chains, but LibDib will work hard to make sure your VIP chain Buyers are happy. We do that all day long for hundreds of Makers in our markets.

  • Some Pay-to-Play wholesale options have high minimums for delivery to accounts (5 or 10 cases per shipment).  This can deter buyers from trying something new, especially in markets like New York where storage space is very limited. On LibDib, Makers set their own delivery/fulfillment minimums which can be anywhere from one bottle to a truck load.  

It should be known that LibDib as the distributor does business with all these aforementioned companies (click here for more information). We purchase products when they are acting as the importer or supplier of record. However, a Maker must choose LibDib as the distributor in that particular market to be on the platform. Makers utilizing these businesses for importing, storage or compliance can use LibDib for distribution. We are distribution experts and our service will make the Buyer happy; therefore, increasing the likelihood of a repeat order.