Sonoma Executive MBAs Embark to France and South Africa for Consulting Engagements March 11 - 24

Wine Business Students Meet Executives and Counterparts at Legendary Dom Perignon, Vondeling Wines
March 2, 2017

Rohnert Park, California - The School of Business and Economics (SBE) at Sonoma State University (SSU) today announced that students in the Sonoma Executive MBA in Wine Business program will be meeting with counterparts and officials at organizations in Reims, France, and Cape Town, South Africa from March 11 - 24. The international business consulting trips provide students experiential learning through exposure to foreign businesses across sectors of the economy, including opportunities to interface with professionals in different countries of origin. Study tours have engaged business and community leaders on the ground in Argentina, Botswana, Chile, China, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Hungary, Malaysia, New Zealand, Poland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, and Vietnam.
"Time and again, students tell us how valuable the international experiences are to their personal and professional growth and learning. Beyond the friendships that develop across oceans and borders, is the knowledge transfer that can significantly shape students' perspectives on their own company and strategy back home, whether a small family-owned business or a global conglomerate," Dr. John Stayton, Executive Director of Graduate and Executive Programs said.
Meetings scheduled in the Champagne region of France include Le Comité Interprofessionnel du vin de Champagne (CIVC), a governing and research body charged with organizing and controlling the production, distribution, and promotion of Champagne wines; Sparflex, a bottle packaging and design company with global clients; Caves Champagne Mercier, considered the number one selling champagne in France; Champagne Jacquart, which represents one of the largest sources of grapes in the Champagne region; Diam Bouchage, a  manufacturer of corks and stopper technology; Tonnellerie, a wine barrel producer; Avize Viti, a regional school of viticulture and enology; and Dom Perignon, a vintage champagne brand known around the world as a symbol of French winemaking. 
In South Africa, students will have meetings with Vondeling Wines, a three-centuries-old winery focused on sustainable farming; Explore Sideways, a cultural, food, and wine tour company; Lanzarac Wine Estate, a wine tourism destination and home to the first bottled Pinotage; Wines of South Africa, a nonprofit industry organization promoting South African wine internationally; VinPro, a service organization for 3,500 South African wine producers; Bosman Family Vineyards, producer of Fairtrade wine; Old Vine Project, dedicated to preserving 35 year old South African vineyards; Joostenberg Wines, a fifth generation family-owned winery specializing in organic wines; Crystallum Wines, specializing in Burgundy wine; and the University of Cape Town, where students will engage scholars on challenges and opportunities for South Africa's economy.
Additional experiential learning components of the Sonoma Executive MBA programs include a small crew sailing expedition with America's Cup team veterans, designed to build leadership communication skills. For more information about SBE's international business consulting tours or experiential learning as part of the Sonoma Executive MBA programs, or for information regarding other advanced degree programs, please call 707-664-3501, email, or visit