Phoenix Suns point guard Chris Paul is now an equity stakeholder in La Fête Wine Company. The growing wine company emphasizes diversity and inclusion in the wine and spirits industry.
Paul’s other investments are media flow management software firm Greenfly and financial tech company Goalsetter. He also owns Koia, a 100 percent plant-based nutrition shakes company, and Misha, a plant-based dairy alternative company. And, he has the production company Ohh Dip!!!, which has produced the ESPN+ basketball series “Why Not Us,” focused on HBCU sports teams.
“I’m thrilled to partner with La Fête Wine Company and work with them to continue to grow the business and fulfill their brand vision,” Paul said in a press release. “I fully support their efforts in creating a better and more equitable society by helping underserved youth, advancing racial justice, and making wine more inclusive.”
The Black-owned wine company was founded in 2019, by Donae Burston. The company’s award-winning wine La Fête du Rosé is now sold in more than 40 markets across the U.S. and online.
“Not only is Chris an incredible athlete and businessman, but he’s also a wine enthusiast who is vocal and passionate about representation and inclusivity in the wine industry,” said Burston. “He is a natural fit for our team, and we are thrilled to have him on board.”
“In May 2021, La Fête became the first company to secure an investment from Constellation Brands Ventures as part of its initiative to invest $100 million in African American/Black and minority-owned businesses in beverage alcohol and adjacent categories by 2030,” Beverage Industry magazine reported.
Burston wants to expose more Black people to the wine industry as a path to creating Black wealth.
“There are nontraditional careers and paths to take,” Burston told The Beverage Industry. “This is a huge, multibillion-dollar industry, and ownership among Black people is minimal. We’re here to play with the big boys and spread the wealth.”
La Fête Wine can be found at wine and spirits stores and Target, Trader Joe’s and Total Wine. Hyatt Hotels, Kimpton Hotels and Nobu Restaurants also serve the brand.
The company got a major boost when DJ D-Nice gave La Fête Wine a shoutout during his popular virtual dance party, “Club Quarantine.”
All of a sudden, people were interested in La Fête Wine.
“It was like a rocket ship. It went up from there,” Burston said. “Prior to that, we were primarily only sold in restaurants and bars. We immediately started a direct-to-consumer business. We sold over a half-million dollars from online alone.”
Burston, who went to HBCU Clark Atlanta University, estimates he will sell around 50,000 cases of rosé in 2022. Each bottle retails for $24.99.