WBC Success Story: Stellenberg Imports

Family-run import business brings South African vinegar to Nashville

Success story: Stellenberg imports

While Michelle and Mark Jones have made a home in Nashville, they craved a connection to Mark’s hometown of Stellenbosch, South Africa. With the growth and momentum around Nashville, they saw the opportunity to introduce unique, quality products from the Western Cape to the American market that local stores, restaurants, and consumers would appreciate.

From idea stage to real business

Mark and Michelle came to Pathway WBC with their business idea, and quickly enrolled in the Discover Cohort. Designed for entrepreneurs wanting to fine tune their business plan and sales channels, the seven-week cohort helped the couple explore their idea and find the best market fit.

“Going through the Discover Cohort helped us explore market research to really understand who our client is, and underscored the importance of advertising for us,” says Mark. “We also identified our revenue streams. The cohort experience at Pathway WBC was just what I needed as a new business owner.”

About their product

Michelle and Mark are sharing part of their culture and passion through new flavors and food exploration. They’re beginning by introducing Rozendal’s Botanical Vinegars, which are naturally fermented in small oak barrels and infused with select botanicals over a 12-year

“They will change the way you experience the taste of vinegar,” says Michelle. “Stellenberg Imports is our opportunity to bridge the distance while also introducing extraordinary flavors that the average American would have never been exposed to without traveling across the globe.”

The Rozendal Botanical Vinegars offered by Stellenberg Imports are special because of the effort and thoughtfulness that goes into producing them. “Our friends at the Rozendal Farm took a considerable risk in moving away from using pesticides on their grapes and to experiment with the herbs they use to infuse the vinegar,” says Mark. “As a result, the farm has yielded a premium-quality product that is both smooth and flavorful.”

What about the name of their business? “Stellenberg Imports” comes from the mountain next to the Rozendal farm in Stellenbosch, South Africa, making a solid connection with Mark’s home, and his friend’s farm, and their first imported product.

“My advice to other entrepreneurs is to be patient,” says Mark. “In today’s world, new ideas and better ways of doing things seem to fly by, but you need to realize that your idea and your passion count.”

Learn more about Stellenberg Imports at www.stellenbergimports.com.

photos of stellenberg imports

Want to meet Mark and Michelle, and taste their South African vinegars?

Come to Power Surge on Thursday, August 2! Our guests of honor are Stephen and Jessica Rose, founders of The Peach Truck, and Stellenberg Imports is our small business highlight. Mark and Michelle will be sharing their story before the main speakers take the stage.

Sample their products, buy a bottle to take home, and meet the owners behind Stellenberg Imports during this evening of storytelling and networking.

Click here to register now for Power Surge on Thursday, August 2.

Want to launch your own business?

Come to an upcoming Blue Sky Business Modeling Workshop to learn how to join our next Discover Cohort.