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Kuehne+Nagel, a global leader in freight and logistics services, has joined the Michelangelo International Wine &Spirits Awards as a headline sponsor.

Jean-Pierre Neethling from Kuehne+Nagel and Lorraine Immelman, founder of Michelangelo Awards

The Swiss-based company, which was founded in Bremen, Germany in 1890, has over 82,000 employees at more than 1,300 locations in over 100 countries. Its strong market position lies in the seafreight, airfreight, contract logistics and overland businesses, with a clear focus on providing IT-based integrated logistics solutions.

Through VinLog, a solution established to service the global exports and importing of wine, spirits, beer and other drinks, Kuehne+Nagel has become a major force in the international drinks arena, also as partner to the South African wine industry’s exporting arm. As part of its sponsorship, Kuehne+Nagel will own and present the Michelangelo trophies for Best Chenin Blanc and Best International Entry.

Jean-Pierre Neethling, who is spearheading the development of the South African VinLog team based in Cape Town: “the dynamic nature of the South African wine industry and the potential for export growth has led to Kuehne+Nagel stepping forward as a partner of the Michelangelo International Wine & Spirits Awards.”

“As the country’s leading wine and spirits competition and the only one with a truly global footprint, Michelangelo underscores the fact that the South African wine industry plays in a global arena,” says Neethling.

“This is the same arena in which Kuehne+Nagel has become one of the world’s leading logistics companies. Although currently involved with the exporting of South African wine to various global markets, we anticipate demand for our country’s wines to increase as the image of brand South Africa grows and more international consumers are made aware of their incredible quality. Through VinLog, Kuehne+Nagel is committed to assisting the industry to achieve greater success in export markets by offering incomparable freighting and logistics services.”

VinLog has extensive capabilities to support the unique supply chain challenges of the international beverage industry, including individual wine growers and spirits distillers, global exporters and importers, as well as multinational retailers. Logistics services offered include transportation of loose or palletised goods, consolidation, production logistics, sea transport management, warehousing, customs clearance and bulk wine movements are the key to serve the industries specific requirements.

According to Lorraine Immelman, founder and CEO of the Michelangelo International Wine & Spirits Awards, the competition’s partnership with Kuehne+Nagel underscores the fact that Michelangelo is a true global wine and spirits event. “Kuehne+Nagel is an undisputed leader in international logistics and its services are of tremendous value to the global drinks industries, including the dynamic South African sector,” says Immelman.

“Kuehne+Nagel’s association with Michelangelo also underscores a belief in the growing exports potential of the local wine industry, which is currently shipping 420m litres of wine to markets around the world,” she says. “This figure is set to increase with future harvests expecting to be better than they were during the extended drought period as well as a growing global awareness of the quality of South African wines.”

The results of this year’s Michelangelo International Wine & Spirits Awards will be announced on 4 October.