running costs – a sense of proportion

By , 18 November 2019



At the crux of it all – a ratings sticker.

In 2014, Christian Eedes and I acquired the brand from RamsayMedia. We incorporated What I Drink Last Night (Christian’s sighted-tasting blog) into Winemag and expanded the category tastings conducted blind and this hybrid approach seemed to work well for you, audience numbers growing from an initial 8 000 users per month to 20 000 by the end of the second quarter 2018.

In August of last year, Winemag was bought by US-based Eileses Capital who invested money in the business, enabling us to give the Winemag brand a facelift and redesign the website. Over the last year, we’ve provided sighted ratings on an almost daily basis; we’ve grown our category tastings to 10 per year; and from the single voice of Christian, we now have an array of top journalists, regularly writing for the site. We’re pleased to say user numbers now sit at 25 000 per month – the community grows and grows.

More recently we made the decision, following much debate, to be true to our slogan of Everything thing to do with South African fine wine, and for Christian to continue to conduct sighted tastings on a regular basis (previously a loss-leading activity for the business). We are able to do this because you said you would pay for it and now we are asking you to do just that by making a contribution. We have suggested you pay R600 a year or R50 a month with a view to achieving a total audience contribution of R300 000 per annum. This amounts to just 10% of our overall cost to run our business but, more importantly, it covers the cost of delivering the sighted tastings to you on a daily basis. The other 90% of expenses are covered by alternative revenue streams.

Thank you for making it clear what you want from Winemag, and for standing by your word to support this vital area of our business.

To contribute, click here.

Jacqueline Lahoud


15 comment(s)

Please read our Comments Policy here.

    Dane | 20 November 2019

    R50 a month is still a give away. Sign me up.

    spoegbak | 19 November 2019

    Yes will gladly drink beer , they didnt make it as a proper magazine , but yes christian is great , and bought loads of wine from winecellar off his scores , new owners some investment company thats begging for money now, so have the nuts and charge for entrance , wont survive one month

    Martin Horn | 19 November 2019

    Hmmm…. too much wine last night? Your maths seems more than a little bit out of shape here.

    You want to raise R300,000 per annum and suggest we all pay R600 a year. With 25,000 readers that would raise R15,000,000; which is 50 times as much as you need.

    If everyone contributed, we would each only need to contribute R12 a year.

    Or are you assuming that only 500 people (2% of the 25,000) will actually contribute anything?

      Christian Eedes | 19 November 2019

      Hi Martin, We are indeed being very conservative when it comes to how many will actually contribute – this is based on case studies of how other media entities who have adopted this model have fared.

    Erwin Lingenfelder | 19 November 2019

    You mention daily sighted reports. Where are they published?

      Christian Eedes | 19 November 2019

      Hi Erwin, Day-to-day reviews as conducted by me are sighted and designated as “Editor’s rating” while Reports involve a panel tasting blind (label out of site). Wineries can submit to me for sighted review at no cost but also with no obligation on our part to publish or they can submit for blind review involving assessment against their peers by the panel as part of our category tastings – this involves an entry fee of R899 per wine. The reviews of the Iona single vineyard range and the Restless River new releases currently visible on the homepage are the results of tastings conducted sighted.

    spoegbak | 18 November 2019

    stuff your website , if u cant generate cash – bad luck for u – go to hell

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