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Wine Industry Strategic Exercise (WISE)

The South African wine industry is in the process of developing a new strategic framework aimed at improving competitiveness and coherence through, inter alia, more focused communication and an industry-wide governance structure.

Business intelligence has been a key theme of the Wine Industry Strategic Exercise, resulting in two projects that will aim to provide easier access to the right information. EDO HEYNS reports

A single wine information portal

The South African wine industry is served by a number of different information systems, databases and libraries. It has, however, become apparent that there will be great value in combining these into one single portal in order to be more accessible and better utilised.

The search engine should search across all incorporated local and international websites and databases, including but not limited to the libraries of Wines of South Africa (Wosa) and South African Wine Industry Statistics (Sawis), Winetech and VinPro databases, as well as relevant international resources, such as Euromonitor and Rabobank reports, websites and business intelligence article domains.

Sawis CEO, Yvette van der Merwe, who will be heading this project, explains that different access levels will be created, for instance a public domain and a members’ login. “Different levels of membership can be created and membership criteria of separate organisations, such as Wosa, must be taken into account.

Data analysis and Market and Consumer Research

Since 1994, South Africa has grown its wine exports significantly. The industry has, however, struggled to deliver added value in export markets and remains to be perceived as a low cost producer, with a history of focussing on production, rather than on the consumer.

Over the past decade, global trade in wine has increased and new markets have emerged. In light of this more complex, globalised industry, discussions now extend to which market to invest in, what product to offer in each of these and how to tackle the supply chain. Supported by data analyses, market and consumer and supply chain insights, the South African wine industry will be able to make more informed decisions.

The stakeholder organisations (Vinpro, Wosa, Sawis, Winetech and Salba) are aligned about the need for an industry-wide strategy in order to be globally competitive. To foster this reform, the industry needs to develop a coherent understanding of South Africa’s opportunities and comparative advantages in key export markets.

Building on the market model insights set out in Wine Intelligence’s Compass Report 2015, this Wine Industry Strategic Exercise project will adapt the generic model to reflect the South African wine industry’s strengths and competencies.

The project will provide information about the potential for top markets, based on factors such as geographical location in target and adjacent markets, existing presence, distribution channels and routes to market, as well as product portfolio pertaining to country of origin, varietal and price point.

Furthermore, this assessment will provide a comprehensive picture of global drinks trends, including, but not limited to wine, and an understanding of what emerging consumer groups – such as younger consumers and wine drinkers in fast-growing consumer markets – are demanding.

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