By Astrid Zulhaime

Together as One: Kristy Keyte of Penfolds Details the Partnership with NIGO

Penfolds celebrates oneness with its first-ever creative partner, NIGO.

We love the saying, “Birds of a feather flock together”. But keep in mind that opposites attract. In partnership with cultural pioneer NIGO as Penfolds’ first-ever Creative Partner, the two philosophies are brought together culminating in a new range of exquisite wines, One by Penfolds. The limited release is about more than just wine; it’s about revelling in the differences that bring us all together. We spoke to Penfolds Chief Marketing Officer Kristy Keyte to find out more about the partnership.

What is the biggest takeaway from this creative partnership?

Kristy Keyte (KK): We are incredibly excited to be working with NIGO, one of the pioneering culture creators of the past 30 years. It makes you think about the two of us together. We’ve been wanting to think about luxury a little bit differently at Penfolds, and part of that is to embrace culture a bit more because we know that it’s important to recruit the next generation of consumers. We wanted this to be authentic. That’s why, someone like NIGO has a DNA that’s quite similar to us at Penfolds—different worlds that are also pioneering, innovative, and pushing boundaries. The big takeout is that we are doing something completely different to recruit new consumers into the wine category and to Penfolds.

Talk us through the meaning behind One by Penfolds. 

KK:  We started with the concept of the idea of oneness—oneness that celebrates what is unique amongst us but also what connects us. There are three things to it and the first is the wine itself. We’ve got a range of wines here under one tier, from four different winemaking regions around the world. The second layer is with NIGO’s signature style. He created this expression of the animals, one from each of the regions that we’re sourcing from. The third piece is about community, and we are announcing today the creation of Penfolds Evermore.

Can you tell us about Penfolds Evermore?

KK: Penfolds Evermore is all about creating a positive future for the next generation and generations of consumers to come. As a global winemaker, an employer, and a leader, we are committed to ensuring that we make a positive contribution to the world. That’s why, we’ve launched Penfolds Evermore today.  “Evermore” is an old advertising slogan that we’ve had on Penfolds back in the 50s. It’s all about everlasting, to be around forevermore, so it makes complete sense. That is the community aspect of it. Then, you have culture, collaboration, and community all wrapped up into this concept of oneness and these wines by Penfolds.

Speaking of the future, what is your take on the next generation of wine drinkers?

KK: We’ve done a lot of thinking around the luxury category, and generally speaking, it’s changed so much over the last five to ten years. It’s more inclusive, more about heart, culture-led, and partnerships are a big part of the disruptiveness. When we talk about culture, it’s just about being part of their world as opposed to talking about yourself and your own stories. You want to be part of that world, so we’re looking at a whole range of initiatives to help us move into that space. For Penfolds, it’s not about walking away from our 180 years of history—it’s really important to these consumers and that’s what they’re telling us. We need to keep–not reinventing but refreshing–our brand DNA because culture and Gen Z are incredibly important. They make up a huge part of the future. In fact, 62% of the luxury market will comprise millennials and Gen Z by 2026. We’re very excited about what this next generation looks like for wine and Penfolds. 

Interview by Ian Loh

This article was first published in the print edition of Grazia Malaysia October 2023.