MARKETING/DESIGN/CONSUMER TRENDS/INSPIRATIONS Cognac & Brandy News for Consumers & Industry Experts
South Africa is considered the 16th largest market for cognac consumption and one of the 2 most fastest growing market in Africa with Nigeria. South Africa is a natural market for cognac. Why? Remember “brandy” is not English but originally a Dutch word, i.e., brandewijn (burnt wine), and South Africa was largely influenced by the Dutch.
South African largest liquor company is named Distell Group Limited. They purchased Cognac Bisquit just a few years ago (2009), and it has just acquired a 60% share in fast-growing liquor distribution company CJ Wines & Spirits‚ expanding its presence in the East.
Privately owned CJ is based in Zhongshan in the Pearl Valley Delta of Guandong province and has operations in Hong Kong‚ Macau and Mainland China. South China is referred to as the country’s “cognac belt” as this is where most cognac is consumed.
The new venture‚ now trading as Distell China‚ is headed by MD Rody Wong‚ who previously ran CJ Wines & Spirits. Wong‚ a former Apple and Seagram executive‚ who has worked in the US and Asia‚ has established a strong support base for the Bisquit cognac brand‚ which Distell bought in 2009. Wong said Distell China’s focus would be on building the presence of Bisquit in the southern part of the country initially.
Today South Africa lost a major personality of its history. Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (18 July 1918 – 5 December 2013) died following a long illness on 5 December 2013 at his home in Johannesburg.
Mandela was a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary and politician who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999. He was the first black South African to hold the office, and the first elected in a fully representative, multiracial election. His government focused on dismantling the legacy of apartheid through tackling institutionalised racism, poverty and inequality, and fostering racial reconciliation.
He nevertheless gained international acclaim for his anti-colonial and anti-apartheid stance, having received more than 250 honours, including the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize, the US Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the Soviet Order of Lenin. He is held in deep respect within South Africa, where he is often referred to by his Xhosa clan name, Madiba, or as Tata (“Father”); he is often described as “the father of the nation”.
We felt so inspired in 1995 when Nelson Mandela, in his first term as the South African President, initiated a unique venture to unite the apartheid-torn land by enlisting the national rugby team on a mission to win the 1995 Rugby World Cup. This story was made famous in the movie Invictus (2009) played with famous actors Morgan Freeman, Matt Damon, and Tony Kgoroge, and directed by Clint Eastwood.
It was an honor to everyone who met him and an inspiration for freedom.