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Balmoral Group’s chiefs speak ahead of international drink festival

Chief Operating Officer (COO) Balmoral group, Akin Eso, and its Chief Executive Officer, Ezekiel Adamu


December promises to be fun for those who love to drink, as Lagos is set to hold the first ever international drink festival put together by Balmoral Group. Ahead of the event, which will hold from December 1 through 3, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the group, Mr. Akin Eso, and its Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Ezekiel Adamu, recently shared with The Guardian what people should expect from the upcoming event.

According to Adamu, the three-day event would have different sessions, such as exhibition, drink summit, and master classes for consumers and professionals, noting, “The summit is more professional, while the master classes are basically for the consumers to help them know more about what they consume, and healthy drinking habit. It will also feature tasting of drinks and wines. There will also be a Beer Village, with barbecues and a live band to entertain guests.”

Expected guests include an international act, several DJs that would sustain the tempo and ensure people return on the second and third day.On what their evaluation of the Nigerian market is, Eso stated, “The Nigerian drinks market is over N6 billion, not yet a major player, as compared to other countries in the world. We, however, have that consuming population, which can be estimated to be over N170 billion. So, with events like this, consumers are more exposed to newer brands and they begin to have options. This event will also open up employment, more brands to come in, and the existing brands will see reasons to expand; it automatically boosts the economy.”

While speaking on what the exhibitors stand to gain, they said apart from the exposure it will provide them, they also get to show their market share and showcase their new products, “It’s a festival where a lot of drink companies would launch new products too,” Eso said.

On what the consumers should expect, Eso said it would be educative, interactive, enlightening and quite engaging: “With all these, it can be a fun day out for the family, as we have activities for the kids and adults, too. It would also help with health, as we have a lot of adulterated drinks in Nigeria. One may ask, how can we differentiate the fake from the original? All these questions will be answered there. It’s actually a good day out.”
 
With the event open to everyone, Eso stated that over 15,000 people are expected at the maiden edition of the festival. Eso also expressed optimism at the outcome, saying, “Because we are sure of what we’re going to be putting in to get that amount.  Professionals, the brand folks, the hotel and hospitality industry experts, the event vendors that use drinks every weekend are the 5,000 professionals. That was how we got the 5,000 professionals. This is an all-drink festival, not an alcoholic festival. It’s where you have Champagne, juice, tea, water, everything in all categories are involved in the Drinks Festival.”

Adamu stated that the company chose to host the event in Lagos because “It is a commercial city. We do not have plans to go to other states for now. The event is, however, not limited to Lagos residents. It is an international brand; we anticipate that it would go to other African countries in the future.”



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