The Wine and Brandy Transformation Unit has focused its energies on backing viable enterprises while being mindful of any potential to overcome challenges. One example of such an enterprise is the recent success of Seven Sisters.

In October, black-owned small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the wine industry were afforded the opportunity to assess their business development needs in a workshop with the Transformation Unit.

The exercise (funded with levy funding) was based on the findings of a deep-dive analysis of the operations of 26 primarily negotiant businesses. Some had land and fixed assets, while others focused on marketing sourced wines under their own labels.

Seven Sisters is, as the name suggests, a family business which acquired land under the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform’s LRAD programme in the mid-nineties. More recently, times got tough for small businesses in the sector. Just when Seven Sisters needed it most, guidance was provided by among others, VinPro, AgriAfrica, AgriFusion, Mr Ivan Oertle, and the Western Cape Department of Agriculture (WCDoA) on various structuring, merchandising and partnership options. Seven Sisters took their advice and are now a unique outlet for SME wines and are in strong partnerships with reputable players both in the restaurant and viticultural fields.

Phil Bowes (VinPro) at the proud launch of Seven Sisters’s new Village Table Bistro on the farm.

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