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Sonoma Executive MBA in Wine Business Students Lead Innovative Consulting Projects in Europe March 8 - 22

nternational Business Tour Engages Wine Executives in France and Greece
by Press Release
March 11, 2019

 Rohnert Park, CA – The School of Business and Economics (SBE) at Sonoma State University (SSU) today announced that Sonoma Executive MBA in Wine Business students will be conducting in-country consulting projects with wine establishments in Europe during their 14-day international business tour to France and Greece. Participating organizations include WSPC® A Place to Study Wine, an education hub offering certified courses in partnership with WSET® London; Wines of Greece, a national Greek organization dedicated to increasing visibility and knowledge of Greek wines in North America; Domaine Skouras, a winery focused on elevating Greek rosés around the globe; Bosinakis Winery, a family-owned winery specializing in Moscofilero; and Greek Grape Wine Tours, a U.S.-based tour agency offering multi-day tours throughout the major wine regions of Greece. Project topics range from growth strategies to market expansion and operational audit to wine exports. Additionally, students will engage with wine experts and principals of renowned domaines and wine organizations in both Greece and France. The international business consulting tours have engaged with government officials, business executives, and community leaders in approximately 20 countries across Europe, Asia, Africa, and South America.

“Project-based learning is a cornerstone of our executive MBA programs. The in-country consulting assignments are examples of how our students engage and lead impactful, innovative projects with businesses abroad and at home, developing skills that are vital to leading any organization,” said Dr. Karen Thompson, interim dean of the School of Business and Economics. “The two-week international trip is an immersive experience that exposes students to a multitude of business models and cultures. Students come away with a broadened perspective and renewed understanding of how businesses can be sustainable.”

In the first week, students will visit prestigious French domaines, including the venerable Château de la Crée, which owns seven Premier cru vineyard blocks located entirely along the renowned Côte d’Or escarpment, and is dedicated to terroir transparency and sustainability; Domaine Boisset, a house of the Boisset La Familie des Grands Vins, which owns a diverse collection of wineries in many of the world’s most prestigious terroirs; Maison Louis Jadot, a Burgundy-based wine and spirits company whose domaines are famous for producing premium wines of the Village, Premier cru, and Grand cru classifications; and Domaine Roulot, a pioneer of single-vineyard bottlings of Meursault wines and owner of five Premier cru parcels. Students will also meet with executives from Becky Wasserman & Co., an exporter of wines from various French terroirs and the Fribourg wine region of Switzerland; Tonnellerie François Frères, a family-owned cooperage that fabricates high-quality, traceable oak casks and barrels; Pellenc Group, an award-winning vineyard equipment manufacturer and innovator serving the wine industry in Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa, and Australia; and Kobrand, an international importer and marketer of fine wines and specialty spirits from around the world.

Greek wine businesses and speakers to be engaged in the second week include Konstantinos Lazarakis, the first Greek Master of Wine and member of the board of directors of the Institute of Masters of Wine; George Skouras, president of the Greek Wine Federation and the father of the quality Greek wine revolution; Maria Triantafyllou, director of National Interprofessional Organization of Vine and Wine of Greece, which represents the majority of private Greek wine producers; Kostas Bakasietas, a French-trained agronomist specializing in Greek indigenous varietals and owner of Bakasietas Vine Nursery and Vineyards; Tselepos Estate Winery, wine producer and exporter; Papagiannakos Winery, the first winery in Greece designed according to bioclimatic standards; and other food and beverage producers.

The Sonoma Executive MBA in Wine Business and all other Sonoma MBA programs are now accepting applications for Fall 2019 start dates. Upcoming information sessions are scheduled for Wednesday, March 13, 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday, March 23, 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at the Wine Spectator Learning Center at Sonoma State University. RSVP for information sessions here: https://www.tfaforms.com/459039.

For more information about our degrees and certificate programs, please visit https://sbe.sonoma.edu/mba, or contact us at (707) 664-3501 or mba@sonoma.edu. The Wine Business Institute, the global leader in wine business research and education, is the first institute of higher learning in the U.S. to offer undergraduate, Professional MBA, and Executive MBA degrees focused on the business of wine.


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