Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the role and influence of cultural intermediaries in the developing wine markets of Japan and Singapore by taking a discursive view of relationships amongst these cultural intermediaries, as well as between them and various members of the supply chain in international wine marketing - including consumers. Design/methodology/approach: The authors explore cross-cultural issues by taking a discursive perspective to studying representations of self, and of inter-organizational and inter-personal relationships in the global wine business, specifically through the analysis of a series of accounts of cultural intermediaries and key stakeholders involved in potentially influencing the extent to which New Zealand wines achieve a greater presence in the Japan and Singapore marketplaces. Findings: In their talk, participants explicitly (and sometimes implicitly) construct "vertical" relationships with downstream and upstream supply chain actors (consumers and producers, respectively) as needing guidance or assistance that seemingly only they are capable of providing. They also construct "horizontal" relations with fellow cultural intermediaries. In these discursive constructions, evaluative positioning often occurs, as the various actors are constructed positively or negatively, depending on the nature of the legitimisation sought by the speaker as they seek to justify their contribution to the network. Practical implications: The insights gained through an examination of discourse should help B2B practitioners in the increasingly globalising wine industry to navigate through the complexity of emerging wine markets in the Asian context. Originality/value: The paper's contribution is in looking at these cultural intermediaries as cultural bridges in the context of "sophisticated globalization" in specific Asian societies not traditionally known for wine-drinking.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Channel relationships, Cultural intermediary, Discourse, Emerging markets, International business, Japan, New Zealand, Role, Singapore, Wines
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1108/13522751211215868
Journal Qualitative Market Research
Rod, M, Ellis, N. (Nick), & Beal, T. (Tim). (2012). Discursive constructions of the role of cultural intermediaries in the wine markets of Japan and Singapore. Qualitative Market Research, 15(2), 128–147. doi:10.1108/13522751211215868