The FINANCIAL — Exclusively natural raw materials used in products of JSC GOMI Spirit and Vodka Company highlights positive association of a drink and a healthy lifestyle, GOMI producers assure. “It is a well known fact that little bit of alcohol is good for relaxation and for stimulating neural activity,” says David Dugladze, General Director of the JSC GOMI Spirit and Vodka Company. He told FINANCIAL about GOMI’s recent business development and the healthy lifestyle, actively promoted by the company.
Dugladze, ex-sportsman in fighting, believes that it is his responsibility to support Georgian sport. His company sponsors fighting sports.
GOMI has its own sport complex. “Healthy life style of every employee matters. This is our strategy. We had a swimming pool for staff, but at the moment the building is being renovated. We also plan to add tennis courts. Our staff can play football on our own stadium,” Dugladze says.
“Interestingly, little bit of alcohol is good for relaxation and for stimulating the neural activity. Alcohol has no negative affects if it is taken in small dosages. Don’t forget, we are talking about exclusively natural products. On the Georgian market you can still find numerous alcohol drinks originally of a very low quality. GOMI tries to counterbalance the negative image of alcohol, offering its customers exclusively high quality products”, Dugladze says.
In 2009 GOMI became the winner of Golden Brand Award, the most influential annual award in Georgia.
Raw materials for alcohol production are also provided by GOMI.
“GOMI uses self-produced spirits. We never import spirit. This is one of the main guarantors for safety”, says Dugladze.
“Another step to producing ecologically clean vodka, cognac and liqueur is technologies. Statements about alcohol safety are not written by us. You will find such claims in scientific or branch literature”.
Dzveli Ubani is GOMI’s premium liquor product. Although it has alternatives on the local market, Dzveli Ubani is unique.
“I don’t want to argue whose quality is better; let’s leave choice with customers, but I can assure you that the company is committed to natural, best quality. GOMI Company focuses on the purity of vodka, cognac and liquor, they are made with organic wheat and water. In addition, it is distilled five times and refined through an active charcoal filtration process.
Q. GOMI started producing new cognac with cherry and quince aroma. This natural product successfully competed with other imported cognacs. Can you tell us, how a naturally pure product is produced?
A. The Company buys quince throughout the summer and autumn and makes reserves for the whole year. We keep fruit in spirit and follow all rules related to the safe preservation of ingredients.
Q. Can we distinguish ecologically clean and healthy alcohol drinks by taste?
A. We certainly can. Experienced person can distinguish healthy vodka from off-grade product, even by taste. But we do need experience. Tasters are able to assess the quality of products only with taste, without any advertisement and attractive packs.
Q. It’s a well approved method of world brand companies to actively work and participate in different social activities. What is your contribution in CSR?
A. Our company is very active in CSR activity. As an ex-sportsman in fighting, I keep strong relations with sportsmen. We support them financially, organize different competitions. GOMI is concerned with establishing the healthy lifestyle among our staff. We arrange competitions in different kinds of sport. Supporting sport and promoting healthy lifestyle in people has always been the main priority for our company.
Q. In the year 2009, you planned to produce a new type of vodka. Can you tell us in more details how distinguished the new product will be from others and why did you decide to produce it?
A. The new product of GOMI will be called GOMI Prestige. With our preliminary estimates, we will sell about 2 million litters per year. We will start producing GOMI Prestige in September. Final version of the new vodka is already finished. We will order bottles to the glass producing company in Erevan. The idea of producing a new sort of vodka came after studying the demands of the local market. Besides, there is a big price difference between two of our products, GOMI Original and GOMI Classic. Customers, who use products around this price gap, mostly use imported vodka, either Russian or Ukrainian. GOMI Prestige is made with exclusively healthy products and it is considered for customers who were consuming imported goods before.
Results & Outlook
GOMI management managed to meet its objective, i.e. realization of 6 million bottles of vodka. They beat the goal.
“In 2009 we plan to sell 10 million bottles. Taking the results of first six months into account, we will definitely meet this objective”, Dugladze says.
Q. GOMI Lux, GOMI Original and GOMI Classic are the bestsellers of your company. Why are these products popular?
A. These three brands of vodka are produced for three different consumer segments. The cheapest is GOMI Lux, GOMI Original is for middle class customers and GOMI Classic is the most expensive product considered for upper class people. Bottles of GOMI Classic are produced in France. GOMI Lux and GOMI Original are more demanded than GOMI Classic. We have added new product GOMI Prestige for middles class customers, it will enter local market in September.
David Dugladze says that global recession affected sales of imported alcohol products, but not so globally as other businesses. “Alcohol products are very specific. They are almost equal to the products of convenience goods”, he says.
Gomi is now planning to enter Israeli market.
“Currently we are exporting vodka to Turkey, Tajikistan and Ukraine, but not in a big volume.
For nearest future, we plan to enter Israeli market. However, entering new market at the background of globalization is connected with lots of difficulties. It needs huge financial resources, firstly for promotion. If we remember an example of Absolute vodka and other worldwide alcohol drink brands, they spent astronomical sum for capturing foreign markets. Currently, in Georgia there is no financial market able to launch finances for our company. GOMI has products of international standards but does not have enough finances for worldwide advertising. Nonetheless, we do not spare our finances and energy to increase the number of exported products”.
“GOMI is a spirit producing company, founded in 1903. GOMI has its own seeding. We use wheat for making spirit.”.
GOMI SPIRIT AND VODKA COMPANY is the legal successor of GOMI SPIRIT AND VODKA DISTILERY, which is located in Khashuri region, village GOMI. The factory started its functioning in 1903 using raw material: wheat, bread, maize and oats. During this period the production of the factory didn’t exceed 150 – 200 L in 24 hours.
After the World War II, GOMI factory started using sugar beet nectar /Melasa/ for producing spirits and the production volume of the factory increased up to 500 DAL. Next years it increased up to 1500 DAL per 24 hours. During this whole period, till 1997, the factory aimed at processing only sugar beet nectar /Melasa/ and Chacha raw spirit.
In 1994 by the decision of governmental organizations the GOMI factory appeared on the list of privatization units and on the factory base, Joint Stock Company “Rektifikati” was legally established.
Considering the request of the whole factory employees, Dima Dugladze became the basic shareholder of Rektifikati. It’s noteworthy that Dima Dugladze had a large experience of working with the factory personnel as he started his work as a lab assistant and became the Director of the factory.
In 1996, under Mr. Dugladze’s supervision the entire process of privatization of the enterprise was completed, the working group of like-minded people was settled and the factory that was not serviceable for about five years started its successful work.
After the privatization, the factory was completely reconstructed and different kinds of construction-montage activities were carried out. The system of two, permanent action four block spirit production equipments (the equipment produces 1800-2000 D/L in 24 hours), was completely changed – usage of new technologies facilitated the automatic operation of the equipment.
Considering the experience of the factories of Europe and CIS the new modern technology scheme was utilized, which enabled the GOMI factory to produce high quality wheat spirits.
During the last years GOMI Spirit and Vodka Company got several golden and silver medals in the various international exhibitions.
Written By Madona Gasanova