“Brands, brand building and brand distinction” is the theme for the 2023 Wine Tourism Conference, sponsored by Wesgro, Delta Air Lines and WWF, that takes place on 17 May at Lanzerac, Stellenbosch.
Margi Biggs, convenor of the annual event, now in its seventh year, has marshalled an impressive list of international and local marketing, branding and tourism experts and innovators as speakers for the event.
“On the whole, local wine tourism is doing well and is approaching recovery to 2019 levels,” says Biggs. “If we are to continue to attract long-haul international visitors as well as those closer to home, including domestically, we are going to have to be that much smarter, nimbler, and more compelling in our offerings and the way we deliver them.”
The keynote address on brand building and brand distinction will be delivered by Pepe Marais, co-founder and group chief creative officer of Joe Public United, one of the country’s foremost branding and communication agencies. A leadership and self-development mentor, he is also the author of Growing Greatness: A Journey Towards Personal and Business Mastery.
A much-in-demand Australian to take the podium will be Peter McAtamney, who heads Wine Business Solutions (Australia), global specialists in wine market research, wine education and direct to consumer (DTC) wine business. He works actively in the South African, Australian, New Zealand and Spanish markets.
Another major drawcard will be Australian wine tourism suprema Robin Shaw. Founder of the celebrated consultancy Wine Tourism Australia, she is a popular speaker on the global wine tourism circuit and the brains behind Wine Australia’s newest Growing Wine Tourism programme.
Mike Ratcliffe, CEO of the Stellenbosch Wine Route, has been a leading player in re-establishing the pre-eminence of Stellenbosch as a centre of excellence, will be addressing ways in which to build collective brand identities Stellenbosch Wine Route is also a sponsor of this event.
The day-long event will feature several other prominent tourism and branding specialists. They include Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa, CEO of the Tourism Business Council of South Africa; Katlego Flocart Ditlhokwe, founder of brand strategist agency The Hyphen; Chantel Botha, MD of Brandlove Training, who will discuss cultivating brand warriors; and Hardy McQueen, executive producer, The CyberCellar Wineshow, who will be talking about diversity and inclusion of audiences.
Wesgro will open the conference. Delta Air Lines will talk about changing trends in air travel.
While Paul Siguqa, CEO of Klein Goederust in Franschhoek, will be looking at building a new South African brand; DTC futurist Andrew Douglas will be moderating a discussion on rebuilding established brands. Panellists to appear will be wine personalities Hein Koegelenberg, Kevin Arnold and Pieter Cronjé.
A panel discussion on how eco-conservation can impact brand building will be moderated by André Morgenthal, project manager of the Old Vine Project. Panellists will include Shelly Fuller of WWF South Africa, Jeremy Borg of Painted Wolf Wines and Kathryn Cilliers of Spier.
The early-bird rate to attend the conference is R2 500 (plus VAT). After 7 April, the cost per person escalates to R3 450 (plus VAT). Go to https://winetourism.co.za/register/ to reserve your seat.
ISSUED BY AUGUST COLLECTIVE