In an effort to expand its presence in the rapidly growing wine industry, the nation?s largest African American wine exporter hosted an exclusive wine tasting reception in New York City in May to announce its bold foray into the South American market of the multi-billion dollar vino business.
More than two dozen people attended the Casa Valduga Brazilian Sparkling Wine launch event in Midtown Manhattan and was hosted by Heritage Link Brands (HLB)?owned and operated by the husband and wife team of Khary and Selena Cuffe and based in Los Angeles, Ca.? The event, the first in a series of stops scheduled throughout the year to promote wines from Brazil, is indeed a highlight for Heritage Link Brands. ?Our strategy is to develop and manage brands that celebrate and inspire,? said Selena Cuffe in an interview with TNJ.com. ?Casa Valduga wines do just that?celebrate the rich history and the wonderful people of Brazil.?
Cuffe, a former executive for Proctor and Gamble and United Airlines, started the (HLB) with her husband in 2005 and has built the organization into a powerhouse minority business enterprise?it’s the largest African American wine importer in the U.S.–a feat it accomplished in 2009. The company manages the operations of dozens of brands of wines and other consumer goods for a number of clients internationally and in the U.S.? For example, in this latest partnership with Casa Valduga, Heritage Link Brands will manage and oversee the brand’s importation and distribution making Casa Valduga one of HLB’s largest suppliers.
?We are excited to bring our products for wide distribution throughout the U.S.,? said Luisa Valduga, marketing manager for Casa Valduga corporate headquarters in Bento Goncalves, Brazil. Valduga is the granddaughter of one of the original founders of the family-owned business, started more than 130 years ago. Valduga said she will actively tout her family’s sparkling libations at the upcoming 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. ?It will be an excellent time for us to market and distribute our wines to an international audience.?
According to the most recent figures from Silicon Valley Bank’s current State of the Wine Industry Report, an industry benchmark, overall sales of fine wines in the U.S. is expected to increase by as much as 13 percent this year?slightly down from 2015 figures. In addition, millennials (young professionals between the ages of 21 and 34 years of age), are more receptive to internationally generated wines compared to baby boomers, who generally tend to gravitate toward domestic wine.
Lastly, response to the Casa Valduga wines at the New York kick-off event was overwhelmingly positive, with guests lauding the rich blend and effervescence in the endless samples of vino. ?You can tell the grapes were fermented to perfection, well-blended and the smooth taste is palpable in every single glass of all of the Valduga wines…simply excellent,? said Richard Weber, an avid wine connoisseur and an attorney at the New York law firm of Gallo, Vitucci Klar.? For more information on locations where to purchase Casa Valduga Wines, please visit the Heritage Link Brands web site.