The value of Nigeria’s wine industry is expected to reach US$370 million by 2015, as Nigerians develop a thirst for high end wine and spirits.
“Many of the global luxury brands have entered the Nigerian market, including several well known spirits and Champagne brands, which are being embraced by the country’s affluent consumers,” said Sue Birch of Wines of South Africa.
With a wine market currently valued at US$300m a year, volume sales in Nigeria are expected to grow by 6% a year, with red wine accounting for 74% of sales.
WOSA is keen to tap into this growth: “We know anecdotally from a number producers that there is a robust appetite for premium and high-end South African wines in Nigeria,” Birch said.
South African wine exports to Nigeria grew by 12% for the 12 months to March 2012.
“Europe holds the lion’s share of the Nigerian market with 60% of volume sales, but South Africa is the next biggest player with a 22% by volume share,” said Sapta Bhattacharyya, associate vice-president of global research company Aranca.
Bhattacharyya estimates that 5.2m people, representing the top 10% of earners among the 156m population, account for 43% of wine consumption in the country. “This is the group to target,” he said.
With most economic activity taking place in Nigeria’s key cities of Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Kaduna, Onitsha and Port Harcourt, potential wine markets are being identified and developed with luxury hotels and restaurants catering to the affluent consumers in these areas.
All of WOSA’s marketing efforts will be concentrated on the south, non-Muslim regions of the country.
Currently, importer distributors account for around 70% of distribution, with the balance imported directly by retailers and the hospitality sector.
Home to the second largest economy in Africa, Nigeria will be the world’s fourth most populous nation by 2050.