Top 200: DELOITTE/MANAGEMENT MAGAZINE EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR: Don Braid – CLEAR VISION

Established in 1947, Delegat’s Group is the producer and marketer of the internationally acclaimed Delegat’s and Oyster Bay wines and one of New Zealand’s largest family owned and managed winemakers. Nikola and Vidosava, the parents of current managing director Jim Delegat and executive director Rosemari Delegat, founded the business in Henderson, west of Auckland city, after emigrating in the late 1930s from what is modern-day Croatia.
This year has been year of record sales performance, profit and market share milestones for Delegat’s with highlights including: record global sales of 1,449,000 cases, record total revenue of $165.3 million, record net profit, export case sales growth of 20 percent against industry growth of 17 percent and an increased share of total New Zealand wine exports to 13.3 percent.
The company’s Oyster Bay brand was also the number-one selling New Zealand wine brand in the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada and the fastest growing of the major New Zealand wine brands in the United States.
Delegat’s has outperformed New Zealand wine industry export growth over the past four years with compound annual growth rate of 50 percent.
Annual global sales are now in excess of one million cases.
Delegat’s strategic goal is: “To lead New Zealand category growth and establish Oyster Bay as one of the world’s great super-premium wine brands.” Excellent progress has been made on this in 2008.
The company considers sustainability an integral part of the future of New Zealand wine production and is founding member and strong proponent of Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand.
A firm favourite with stockbrokers, Forsyth Barr says the planets are aligning for Delegat’s and that the company has one of the best profit growth outlooks in the market given the 45 percent increase in the 2008 harvest and the ongoing export growth potential in its key UK, Australia and US markets. Delegat’s is New Zealand export growth company and is heading into sweet spot from both improvements in volume and the average realised case price.
The company has exceeded market expectations and over the next year it would appear that most of its key earnings drivers will be positive with the lower NZ dollar, high growth in export volumes and case prices holding up relatively well in its key target markets.

JUDGES’ COMMENTS

WINNER
Delegat’s Group
It’s time to raise glass to this outstanding New Zealand wine company. It understands the pulling power of effective branding, the heady rewards that come from an exceptional product, and it has nose for making and sustaining those all-important profit earnings. This is classy company with bold approach to winning over the world’s discerning wine drinkers. Delegat’s is vintage exemplar of bold and different. This successful and passionately led company is rightfully the toast of the town.

FINALIST
Datacom
The long-running success story of IT services company Datacom is heart warmer. Its genesis lies in the computer bureaux businesses of the 1970s and ‘80s – and its performance as the best home-grown enterprise of its kind gets better by the year. This is company that understands its market, its customers, its technology and the meaning of service.
The year to March 31 has proved to be another successful year for Datacom with revenues increasing by 15 percent and profit after tax by seven percent. The company has track record of success having achieved 10-year compound annual profit growth rate of 20 percent. This kind of performance might make success look easy but it’s all down to the dedicated and innovative Datacom team. Staff numbers are on the rise and business is booming in Australia and Southeast Asia. We have not heard the last from this organisation.

FINALIST
Port of Tauranga
Port of Tauranga, no stranger to these awards, foots it with the best performing ports in the world. Its consistent growth, profit performance and willingness to diversify and innovate show just how effective bold strategies for even traditional industries can be. Even Fonterra’s move to use the Ports of Auckland has failed to scupper or seriously dent this thriving regional enterprise.
This year has been another record year for the company, achieved during increasingly challenging times. strong focus on efficiency and on building new business means this company is future-proofing itself effectively and positioning itself to be able to take full advantage of future opportunities. The ‘can do’ attitude of management and staff gives Port of Tauranga strong competitive advantage. It is pleasure to watch the ongoing progress of this company.

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