Leading marketer of alcoholic and non- alcoholic brands, Grand Oak Limited, has concluded plans to export its products to West African markets.
The company’s Managing Director, Aare Fatai Odesile made the disclosure at the maiden edition of the ‘International Drinks Festival’ held recently at the Federal Palace Hotel, Lagos where he enlightened consumers on the benefits of alcohol and the need to drink responsibly.
Speaking on the company’s expansion plans, Odesile said that the company would aggressively push its brands to the Northern parts of the country, following the end of Boko Haram insurgency; adding that it had also concluded plans to expand to Ghana and afterward expand to other West African countries.
“There are plans to service the growing economy of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), we have been to Ghana, and we are just perfecting our strategies in Ghana. Even within Nigeria, we are not yet servicing the whole of the country. We are happy that the Boko Haram insurgency is over. We used to service 17 states instead of 36 and now the other 19 states are free and I can tell you, the future is bright for this business”, he said.
Similarly, Odesile pointed out that contrary to what many people think, consumption of spirit, rum and other alcoholic drinks has a lot of benefits to the body but, its abuse is what many analysts or industry watchers have concentrated on and simply condemn its consumption.
“There is a lot of misconceptions about drinks and people generalize a lot; they will tell you that ‘Ogogoro’ or alcohol, generally, is bad. Meanwhile, there are some health benefits of alcohol. The catch is just to be moderate about it, you do not over consume.
“Let me tell you, a lot of preservatives have alcohol in them; a lot of the multivitamins have as high as 10 percent alcohol in them. Go back and please check. So, alcohol provides some reasons for metabolism. It does lift your mood and it does put you in the right social mood if it is done responsibly.” he explained.
In her own contribution, the Trade Marketing Manager, Grand Oak, Adenike Lawrence said that Grand Oak will continue to innovate in order to meet consumers’ needs. “We are known to have world class brands. So consumers should expect continuous development in how we meet their needs. We have recently launched 9ja Café Rhum, meeting some set of consumers needs. So, from time to time, we will introduce other great innovations to meet more consumer needs as well”.
Consumers at the festivals, who trooped to Grand Oak’s stand and sampled their products, applauded the company for its innovative products. The brands which include 9ja Café Rhum, Regal Dry Gin, St Lauren, Lord’s Gin, Seaman’s Aromatic Schnapps, Swagga among others were on display.
Ezekiel Adamu, CEO Balmoral Group and organizers of the festival disclosed that the event would help the country develop reliable statistics about the drink market and it will also help brands understand what consumers thought about their products and services.
“We feel Nigerians need this kind of platform. For example, we hear all the statistics all the time that Nigeria houses the highest number of consumers of alcohol in the world and others but when we did our research, we found out that Euromonitor, which is a reliable data company, only did a statistics of about 2,000 Nigerians in a country of about 180 million people. We found out that this statistics is not enough.
“What we did was to create a platform where we can bring all drinks, lovers, together and get their statistics. With this one, we can use it to determine trends in business and you get to have proper statistics about the drink business”, he said.
With over 200 exhibitors, over 50 speakers and Master Classes, plus lots of tasting and sales, performances from various artistes, a world bartending flair performance and others, consumers and drink enthusiasts had a memorable time at the event.