Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Wines of Lebanon scoops top award at IWC 2012

London, 12 September 2012

Wines of Lebanon was last night named as Generic Campaign of the Year at the 2012 International Wine Challenge Awards Dinner at the Hilton in Park Lane, London.

The campaign, run by Coco PR, was launched in 2010 and marked the first time Lebanon had embarked upon such an initiative. The judges felt that Coco PR had done “a superb job of bringing Lebanon into focus in the past year” and praised the campaign for being “both interesting and well directed”.

“I am absolutely thrilled to have won the Award, particularly as we were up against two very worthy opponents [Wines of Germany and the Bordeaux Wine Council] said Coco PR Director Madeleine Waters. “I am also so pleased that the judges felt that a small, lower budget campaign like ours deserved recognition.  Lebanon is a tiny country with an even tinier production, but by having a good product from a remarkable country and by doing the basics well we have achieved solid results.”

Chateau Musar’s Serge Hochar, President of the Union Vinicole du Liban, the trade association of Lebanese wines whose members commissioned the campaign, said: “This marks a great step forward for Lebanon and shows that working together in a professional way can bring great results.  We all congratulate Madeleine on this tremendous Award and are looking forward to another successful year of the campaign with Coco PR.”

Since 2010 Coco has run a series of successful press trips to Lebanon which has resulted in press coverage in national wine columns, consumer magazines and trade titles. A series of roadshows and masterclasses run by Tim Atkin MW and Lebanese wine expert Michael Karam  has taken the wines to trade and press audiences in London, Manchester and Bristol, and a generic stand at the London Wine Fair in 2011 and 2012 has led to greater awareness of Lebanese wines in the UK, leading to increased listings.  Exports of Lebanese wines to the UK grew by 26% from 2010 to 2011 (source Lebanese Customs).

Now beginning its third year, the campaign has attracted new wineries for 2012/13 keen to make their mark in the UK wine market.