Two Black Men Enter the Luxury Spirits Industry With Billionaires Row
Exclusivity and class are two things that mean a lot in an array of industries in this world. So, when you have a brand that speaks that, you do everything in your power to make it front and center. This is exactly what William Benson and Patrick Ductant, the co-founders of Billionaires Row, aim to do with the brand.
Billionaires Row is a premier lifestyle brand that includes champagne, cognac and brandy, which was created in France. By tackling global credit-less markets, these gentlemen are making sure that they influence those who carry weight in the industry to always stay a step ahead of the game. With their exciting lifestyle products and experiences, Billionaires Row continues to show signs of building and setting the bar of the luxury lifestyle higher and higher.
We had the opportunity to catch up with the duo to discuss the brand, their marketing strategy and what we can look forward to in the future.
Explain the concept behind Billionaires Row and how you set yourselves apart from other luxury liquor brands.
Billionaires Row is a lifestyle brand. We don’t consider ourselves a champagne brand, we focus on the lifestyle. That's what sets us apart from other brands such as Dom Perignon and Moet. Yes, you see aspiration when you see those brands but there are no other extensions from them. You don’t see a fragrance called Moet, you don’t see water called Moet, and there's not a cognac called Moet. There only as good as long as the brand lasts. The whole concept behind Billionaires Row is that it started as districts around the world such as The Hamptons, ocean drive, rodeo drive, Paris, London, and so on. Within those markets, there are streets dubbed b row. We brought people together with our events such as Thinkers Thursdays. We brought together pioneers of the industry and we took that experience and put it in a bottle called b row. The flagship product is the champagne and then others in our brand extend from that.
As a business, being able to have success in the U.S. is a major goal. You guys have conquered the globe. How does that feel for you guys?
That means everything. One of the things that are thrown at you as an entrepreneur is if your product is buyable and can you sell. Can you convince a consumer to spend $100? The strategy for us was to tackle markets that weren’t necessarily popular in the American eye but were popular in the champagne and spirit sector. For example, Nigeria and South Africa are the leaders in premium champagne spending. They are spending an average of almost $300 per bottle. This makes them the top 3rd consuming country in the world in that space. So, the strategy for us was to attack a market where we could identify with those consumers who could identify with us and our brand and wanted to associate with it. We wanted to identify with consumers who had cash in what we call a credit-less society. What that means we convince a consumer to spend money with us not using credit but strictly on cash. We grew that market very quickly and in 6 months we were in over 100 retail restaurants and hotels.
How does Billionaires Row fit into the luxury lifestyle of the Black man?
Our swag speaks for itself. The way we’ve positioned the brand and ourselves as a brand is when we step outside, we try our best to inspire others. We also individually aim to influence the influencers. For example, were not worried about what the masses are doing, we are focused on what Kylie Jenner and Kendall Jenner are doing. They are already influencing the masses, so if we are influencing them, were a step ahead of the game. We’ll be able to capture that audience. Also, with the Black Lives Matter movement being centered around black men, we carry ourselves as black men with class. Our mission is also to give back to our community and let them know we care and understand. It's important to us as black men to represent that.
Your brand has been in the company of celebrities such as Kim Kardashian who’s a big name herself. Who is one celebrity you would want to represent your brand and why?
We are setting ourselves aside when it comes to Billionaires Row. We would say that we embrace every person and not just put one particular person to represent our brand. We believe as a company that this is for everyone. It's our mission. However, if we had to pick one celebrity in the entire world, we would pick Kendall Jenner. Her demographic and who she speaks to with her brand closely aligns with what we do. Our group of consumers like hers are between the ages of 18-34. We’re a global brand so we’re selling in Canada, Africa, and Europe where our consumers are being able to consume alcohol at the age of 18 versus in the U.S. where they must be 21. So, we are still marketing to that consumer which speaks to her brand and ours as well. There are definitely a few other celebrities that we would have in mind, but specifically, if we had to, we would say, Kendall Jenner.
What more can we expect from Billionaires Row? Any exciting endeavors coming in 2021?
There's a lot to expect from Billionaires Row in 2021, especially from the philanthropic side being able to give back to people that look like us. We are creating our water division as well as introducing our fragrance to the market. We also will be introducing our hotel and resort chain.
You can find more information about Billionaires Row on their website www.billionairesrow.com.
You can also follow them on Instagram @billionairesrow.