FirstCape buys flagship winery

27 August, 2008
Page 6 
Brand Phoenix, which co-owns the leading South African wine brand FirstCape with local producer Newton Johnson, has announced the purchase of its first winery.

Simondium, near Franschoek, a premium wine-growing region to the east of Cape Town, will become the flagship production plant and "the new heart of FirstCape", according to the company.

Brand Phoenix said it had bought Simondium because of the "massive growth in demand for the brand in both the UK and Europe".

It stated: "The addition of this production facility to FirstCape's existing South African infrastructure will allow greater flexibility and improve quality even further from its category leading level."

The winery, which was bought from Spier, employs 19 permanent and nine casual staff.

FirstCape's head winemaker, David Smit, will be based at Simondium. It has a central blending cellar with specialised winemaking facilities, and two high speed bottling lines that can bottle up to 90,000 litres daily.

Brand Phoenix director Greg Wilkins said: "This is a huge moment for the guys in South Africa."

Digital Edition

Drinks International digital edition is available ahead of the printed magazine. Don’t miss out, make sure you subscribe today to access the digital edition and all archived editions of Drinks International as part of your subscription.


Tess Posthumus

Staffing crisis could open opportunities

The pandemic has thrown many challenges at bar owners over the past couple of years and the ones that survived the various lockdowns and restrictions deserve a pat on the back. However, while revenues are returning and bars are beginning to recruit once more, we’ve come up against a whole new set of problems, one of which is a global starring crisis.