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Yao Family Wines

Yao Family Wines

Premium Napa Valley Wine Company, Founded by NBA Star, Yao Ming

Company Overview

Our Story

In November 2011, Yao Ming, global humanitarian and recently retired NBA star, announced the establishment of his new Napa Valley wine company: Yao Family Wines. The company released its inaugural wine under the brand name Yao Ming®. Yao Family Wines appointed Pernod Ricard (China) as its sole and exclusive importer and distributor of the Yao Ming® wines in mainland China.


The Mission

Yao Family Wines has created a Napa Valley luxury wine brand with distribution in China and USA, the two largest growing markets for wine.

Now Yao Family Wines is looking to develop direct to consumer initiatives in both China and USA, which will include:

  • A tasting room in Napa
  • A tasting salon in Shanghai
  • A direct to consumer platform in China
  • Marketing initiatives to increase awareness and demand in China and in the United States

Pitch Deck


  • Yao Ming is the lead investor in this round

    January, 2015
  • Sold $8M in wine sales to date

    January, 2015
  • Wine Imports to China are growing 25% Year-over-Year

    January, 2015
  • Wine Enthusiast Magazine Awards all three Yao Family Wines with scores of 90+

    April, 2014
  • Robert Parker reviews Yao Family Wines for the first time, awarding a score of 95 to the Family Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

    October, 2013
  • Began wine distribution in the U.S.

    September, 2012
  • Signed exclusive distribution agreement with Pernod Ricard China, the largest global drinks company in China

    December, 2011
  • Tom Hinde hired as President and Director of Winemaking for YFW, bringing with him experience from , Kendall-Jackson, La Crema, and Flowers

    November, 2011
  • Yao Ming announces the establishment of his new Napa Valley Company: Yao Family Wines

    November, 2011


Yao Ming
Yao Ming
Owner and Proprietor, Yao Family Wines
"Every empty bottle is a permanent memory – a night to remember with family and Friends. We are all eating different meals but sharing from the same bottle. That’s why I fell in love with wine. It reminded me of the family-style meals in China."
Tom Hinde
Tom Hinde
President and Director of Winemaking
"It is my distinct honor to work with Yao Ming, as he directs the style of the wine. It is ultimately his personality that emerges in our wine."
Robert Parker
Robert Parker
Wine Critic, The Wine Advocate
"I am aware of all the arguments that major celebrities lending their names to wines is generally a formula for mediocrity, but that is not the case with Yao Ming. These are high class wines. The two Cabernets are actually brilliant, and the Reserve bottling ranks alongside just about anything made in Napa."
Steve Heimoff
Steve Heimoff
California Editor at Wine Enthusiast Magazine
"[Yao Ming Wines] bursts with upfront, delicious blackberry, crème de cassis and dark chocolate flavors that are wildly sweet on the midpalate, but then finish thoroughly dry. [It] immediately establishes itself among the elite Cabernets of Napa Valley."
James Laube
James Laube
Wine Critic, Wine Spectator
"The quality of the Reserve is impressive. A pleasingly subtle and restrained style, graceful, delicate, supple and flavorful."