Here is a photo of our table at Harrods’s Women in Wine & Spirits event. Hanneli Rupert-Koegelenberg, my wife and owner of La Motte, was honored as one of the women in the global wine industry. La Motte’s Pierneef Shiraz Viognier 2007 and Chardonnay 2007 were chosen for the event and subsequent wine promotion. A very proud moment for us.
Below are the answer that Hanneli gave to questions about her involvement in the wine industry:
What made you decide to take this career path? – I grew up in the beautiful South African winelands and in a family that is very involved in the South African wine industry. My family has a number of wine estates and in 1984 I received ownership of La Motte. Although being vintner is not my primary career, I am intimately involved with the strategic management and development of La Motte.
What are the biggest challenges you find in a male dominated industry? – I have been very lucky to work with men who aren’t scared to listen to a woman’s opinion. I think the South African wine industry is also very accepting of women and there are a number of very talented women in senior positions in both the winemaking and business side of the industry. The head of South Africa’s international wine marketing organisation is a women!
Who inspires you? – My family, specifically my father for his work ethic and dedication to always giving his very best and my mother for her all-encompassing passion for people. I feel I am very blessed to have had these wonderful people as my parents.
What do you feel are the biggest challenges ahead for the industry? – Answering from a South African perspective, we need to communicate the diversity and excellence of South African wine to the world. No single South African wine estate can do that on its own and we need to work together.