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Toby Bekkers

Nuffield Australia 2017 Scholarship winner


Toby Bekkers has been awarded a 2017 Nuffield Scholarship supported by Wine Australia, to explore world best practice in the marketing of fine wines directly to consumers.

Based in South Australia’s McLaren Vale, Toby seeks to understand how high-end brands both within and outside of the wine sector identify and interact with their target market.

As the co-owner of Bekkers Wine with his wife Emmanuelle, Toby is committed to demonstrating that McLaren Vale and Bekkers can stand proudly amongst the world’s most coveted fine wines.

Wholly focused at the fine-wine market, Bekkers Wine’s business model is deliberately limited in its scale and an authentic example of the excellence present in the Australian wine landscape. The key reason for this direct to customer approach is to create an alternative distribution model to the highly competitive wholesale channel.

Toby is keen to understand what the opportunities are for small- to medium-sized Australian wineries to access export markets using a direct to consumer sales and distribution model.

As a member of the South Australian Government’s Luxury and Functional Foods Strategy Advisory Group, Toby has demonstrated a keen interest and understanding of how consumers engage with luxury products.

Toby plans to share his scholarship research with the broader Australian wine community and Australian primary producers more generally.

“There is much expertise about luxury marketing directly to consumers – both within and outside of wine. However, it needs to be extracted and presented in a usable form for business.”

He will travel to the USA to attend the ‘Direct to Consumer’ Conference and visit best practice wineries in California.

Toby also plans to meet with high-end wine collectors in the USA and UK to better understand what motivates them to purchase. He will also visit ESSEC Business School in France, which is forefront in the education of luxury branding. An important aspect will be visiting high-end brands in other industries such as jewellery and fashion to see what concepts may be transferable to Australian agriculture.


Location: McLaren Vale, South Australia
Mobile: 0407 807 568
Scholarship report: click to view
Returning Scholar presentation: watch video
Scholarship profile: click to view


Toby Bekkers is sponsored by:

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