Eliza Brown ran from the family business for years, but she couldn’t deny that wine ran through her veins.
Eliza Brown was part of a fourth generation wine-making family, the Brown Brothers. Already successful by the time she was an adolescent, she was hesitant to join the family business. She wanted something different for herself.
She dabbled in a few things over the years, but ultimately found herself working in advertising. She spent years in Melbourne’s club scene, networking and trying to build a life, but the call of the country and her family’s legacy was too strong.
At the age of 32, after the tragic death of her father, Eliza was thrust into managing the business with her two siblings. She felt too young and inexperienced becoming the boss at such a young age. But at her father’s funeral, after a woman approached her and denigrated her ability as a business owner, she was determined to uphold her father’s legacy. When recalling the event she said, “We made it our mission to succeed after that. She did me a favour.”
With Eliza behind the wheel, the business is now thriving. It turns over $5 million a year and employs 25 full-time staff and around 15 part-time staff.
Eliza loves that the wine industry brings people together. She is passionate about where her family has been and where it is going. When asked about whether she felt obligated to take up the mantel for her Dad she said, “I did in one sense. The other sense was that I wanted it to succeed for Dad. Now I can’t think of anything else I’d rather do.”