Sir John Hegarty, the man behind Bartle Bogle Hegarty, has been busy building a vineyard in the South of France. Hegarty told the Times UK that:
“I’ve worked in advertising for 40-odd years. I deplore the word retire, but you want a segue [a seamless link] into doing something else,” he says. â€œWe didn’t want to just have a house in the country where we went once every four to five weekends, opened it up, read some papers, closed it up on the Sunday, and drove back.”Advertisement
Hegarty, 63, and his partner, Philippa Crane, 52, bought an old farmhouse set in 54 acres in the foothills of the Montagne Noire near Carcassonne. A similar property is up for Â£1.74 million. Crane, a former board member and ad producer at BBH (who-hoo, inter office love!) manages the vineyard full time.
The grapes from Hegarty’s land have been sold to the local co-operative for the past 35 years. Naturally, the ad man and his lady have decided to not sell to to the co-op as they were informed that the profit is minimal. Instead, the couple have set up their own label and now produce their own award-winning Minervois wine, Hegarty Chamans. Make money, money and all that. Hegarty is a true ad man and relished the challenge of building a brand from scratch. Yeah, you would too. Hegarty also said that:
“It’s such an expensive industry to set up. Also it’s over-supplied and it takes a very long time to develop the product that you want to make. If you are dealing with an agricultural product you’re subject to the vagaries of Nature. It’s not like making jeans. At the beginning you are a farmer, then you’re a chemist, and, if you are selling your wine, you’re a marketeer. But nothing great is created with ease.”