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Wineries need to build brand South Africa around world, says Accolade boss

Published:  25 September, 2012

South African wineries need to concentrate on building brand South Africa around the world if they are going to reach their full potential, according to Troy Christensen, chief executive of Accolade Wines.

TextSouth African wineries need to concentrate on building brand South Africa around the world if they are going to reach their full potential, according to Troy Christensen, chief executive of Accolade Wines.

 

Speaking at the opening session of Cape Wine 2012 in Cape Town, Christensen said he was happy to confirm Accolade was far more committed to the country than its previous owners, Constellation.


He conceded Constellation's priorities elsewhere in the world, particularly in the US, meant it could not have the same "passion" for South Africa that Accolade could now have.


Accolade, which has Flagstone as part of it South African portflio, is determined to play its part in building brand South Africa.


He said its challenge was not just in "investing in the quality of wine, but where it comes from".


Christensen said the "passion of the people and the beauty of the place" should be two driving factors in making consumers aware of South African wines. He used the examples of the enormous demand for Malbec and Moscato in the US to show how wine styles can become more important than where they are from.


Africa, he argued, has the potential to become the next economic powerhouse after China, hence why Accolade and so many other international wine conpanies were so keen to invest and have a strong footing in South Africa - its main wine market.  Africa has a great opportunity, he added, to be "a substantial driver of economic growth".


He said South Africa is well placed to benefit from growing demand from younger, better travelled wine drinkers in China who want to buy in to wine with a story and where it is from.

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