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Commandaria is the oldest wine appellation in the world, with the wine region of Limassol, Cyprus, the internationally only one legally allowed to produce Commandaria. During the Middle Ages, Cyprus' sweet wine called Commandaria, gained international fame through the Crusader conquerors of the island, the Knights Templar, who arrived on the island in the 12th century and turned it into the source of their wealth and prosperity. In spite of its long history, time has was unkind to Commandaria, which gradually lost its fame and recognition. This paper provides the theoretical basis and contextual foundation for the commercial rebirth of Commandaria and the reconstruction of its brand and its findings are based on the results of a research project, funded by the Cyprus Research Promotion Institute. The research provided strategic marketing data and guidance towards the improvement of the Commandaria brand on a local and global basis. The research methodology included a variety of primary, secondary, qualitative and quantitative methods, including: ten semi-structured interviews, three focus groups, with local industry experts, one web based questionnaire with one hundred international wine experts, six consumer focus groups, two consumer surveys of five hundred respondents each, journal articles, books, company reviews, newspaper clippings and webbased information.

This paper is based on the qualitative, secondary and theoretical results of the research; and it constitutes the first, descriptive part, of the Commandaria strategic branding analysis.

Keywords: Commandaria; Cyprus wine; Marketing; branding; sweet wine; wine; wine business

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 2012

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  • The International Journal of Management Cases (IJMC) developed in 2002 from its predecessor The Journal of Management Cases, and present case studies across a broad range of management disciplines. The IJMC is the official journal of the CIRCLE Research Centre. CIRCLE (Centre for International Research Consumers, Locations and their Environments) is a virtual research group spreading over 70 universities.
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