Partnership talks with the bubbly makers began a year ago
DJ Zinhle sparkles as CEO of international wine brand
DJ Zinhle has not only acquired equity in an international sparkling wine, Boulevard Nectar Rosè, but she has also been appointed as the CEO.
The brand's marketing manager, Rachel de Mardt, revealed to Sowetan yesterday afternoon that the deep pink-hued bubbly was about four years old and was crafted in the Languedoc-Roussillon region of southern France.
The brand has three offices in SA – Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg. Although she won’t have an office, according to De Mardt, DJ Zinhle as CEO will be hands-on with the strategy, marketing and other operational duties of the beverage. She will have regular meetings with the board made up of three members.
Speaking to Sowetan yesterday, Zinhle said her head was buzzing with excitement.
“This means that I’m a part owner of Boulevard and that’s why I’m CEO because every decision affects me,” Zinhle said.
“From production to sales, if we are adding products I need to be part of it. It’s not just that I’m the face of this thing, but it means I’m going to work. I’m hired.”
The popular DJ, however, declined to share publicly the percentage of the shares she and her business partners held in the alcoholic brand, but said she was happy with it.
For now the focus is on Boulevard Nectar Rosè, but Zinhle confirmed that they plan to introduce more.
“This is the bottle that I joined into, but we plan on introducing more products. People just need to go buy this one for starters,” she said.
She added that her successful accessories brand Era by DJ Zinhle, which has been active for seven years, helped her prepare for this moment.
“As much as I love music and deejaying and I’m good at it I have always loved business. This one just required a different level of me, that’s why I feel dizzy and overwhelmed.
“My experience is in sales and marketing. Because of Era I have also been involved in the production and building a brand from scratch – from sourcing, branding and selling it.
“Now as the CEO of Boulevard I have to take it a level higher. It’s also a learning process for me.”
Zinhle said the acquisition didn’t happen overnight and they had been in discussion for over a year.
“So, it’s been a long time and I realised it took so long because of the gravity of the situation.
“It sounds corny, but it means that anything is possible. It’s so unbelievable that a black South African woman can acquire this, but it’s possible.
“If I can do it, it means we can do more as women. I’m proud of what black women are doing right now. We are onto something.”
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