Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH), the French conglomerate that trades in luxury goods, including distribution of products under Moët & Chandon and Hennessy — has expressed commitment to continue serving the Ugandan market, allaying fears inspired by the slow distribution process during Covid-19 lockdowns.
According to Moet Hennessy LVMH marketing manager for Eastern Africa Alexandre Helaine, the company’s portfolio is growing following the acquisition of new brands.
He says sales in high-end liquor “went crazy during Covid”, a thing they hadn’t anticipated as they thought disposable income would reduce due to loss of jobs, and this led to an unexpected rise in demand, affecting distribution to markets like Uganda.
“Sales of Moet went crazy… crazy… and we were even out of stock. The demand is higher than our production around the world, not only in Uganda,” he said.
To counter this, he said, they have decided to target high-end consumers instead of spreading thin with a huge low-paying consumer base.
“When we have more products in future, we can spread the distribution elsewhere,’ he said.
“… all our products are natural… agricultural… it takes time for them to be produced. For example… if it’s Hennessy, it takes a minimum of three years… it takes time to grow the vines… from planting to harvesting grapes, it takes four years…”
Speaking at an awareness event held Wednesday night at Banana Bar in Bugolobi, Kampala, the company’s Marketing Manager for Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi Janet Mwalilino noted that the company distributes multiple variations of spirits, champagnes and wines to match different consumer needs.
“… Brut is versatile…anyone who takes a beverage that’s dry is going to be comfortable with Moet Brut; someone with a sweeter palate will also be comfortable with it… you can have it with your entrée, dessert, red and white meat dishes… The other expression is the Rosé, excellent for late afternoon, for your sundowners… for your light red meat, for those with a sweeter palate [can use] the Nectar…”
Moet brands are brought into the country by Black Showmans Beverages, and David Kakonge, the company’s chief executive officer confirmed replenishment of supply.
According to Kakonge, after shipping into the country, distribution is handed over to Black Hawk, a brand under Black Showman’s that handles stores around the country.
At a Thursday evening event held at Latitude 0 Degrees Hotel in Makindye, Kampala to give guests an experience of the Glenmorangie Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Mwalilino said they’ll hold more awareness campaigns to help consumers further understand their brands.
She said that solving the problem of reduced supply may take up to two years after current strategic investments in production start yielding.