28th February, 2012 by Gabriel Stone
Concha y Toro has announced plans to open an office in Cape Town, providing the Chilean group with a base from which to support its rapidly growing sales across the African continent.
Due to open this April, the office will make Concha y Toro the first Chilean winery to have a fixed base in Africa, a market in which the company has been working since 2001.
While distribution will remain in the hands of the company’s existing partners, the new Concha y Toro office will allow an increased commercial focus on promoting its brands with the end consumer.
The office will also take responsibility for distribution of the group’s Argentine brand, Trivento, as well as its recently acquired Fetzer Vineyards in California.
With Concha y Toro’s sales to the continent reaching US$11 million in 2011, Africa currently represents 2.5% of the group’s exports. This percentage has increased significantly in recent years, with the last decade showing sales growth of 20% in both volume and value.
Led by its Casillero del Diablo brand, Concha y Toro sells its complete portfolio into 28 African countries, including Kenya, Angola, Mozaambique and Nigeria.
Thomas Domeyko, manager of north zone exports of Concha y Toro, explained that the move would allow the company “to deepen and work the markets in much more detail.
“Given the physical remoteness of the continent and the particular characteristics of each of its countries, it is necessary to be very close to their requirements and needs, and thus be able to work and see opportunities for strengthening our brands.”
As yet the company has offered no indication of plans to acquire a South African brand for its increasingly international portfolio.