Meet our First Business Star of the Week – Mr. Mozzie’s Warwick Rebeck
Our “I Love Durban” Business Star of the Week is the hands on, proudly Durban Entrepreneur Warwick Rebeck. Even after spending some time in London, he knew his heart belonged to Durban and we are proud to showcase Mr. Mozzie’s as the first in our weekly feature.
How many of you have driven past this building, without knowing the rich history and amazing story of one of our iconic Durban Brands?
Mr. Mozzie’s is a household name synonymous with quality, taste and consistency.
After studying as an economist and working for a leading FMCG company where he met his wife, Warwick Rebeck has innovated and taken this iconic Durban brand to new heights.
Mr. Mozzie’s was founded by his father-in-law Marcel Wouters, fondly known as “Mozzie”. Wouters was born in the Netherlands and after spending some of his early years in Zimbabwe moved to South Africa.
Interestingly enough, Wouters ran the then Argyle Butchery in 1968, which belonged to his father-in-law. Looks like history did repeat itself when Warwick joined the business in 1997.
As a young man Wouters ran the small shop, which prospered into the iconic business you see today.
Warwick started his career at Beacon Sweets where he met his wife, Tina. He was involved in many aspects of the company, including marketing, sales and production. He joined Mr. Mozzie’s in 1997 and soon started buying out the business, a process he has since completed.
He said the move to Mr. Mozzie’s was life changing. “I never dreamed I would end up in the meat business. But it has been a great experience.” His life changed again in 2006 when Wouters retired.
Warwick says that he owes a lot to Beacon Sweets. “There I learnt a lot about production, sales and marketing. This FMCG grounding has been really useful to me here.”
The secret of Mr. Mozzie’s success, he says, lies in the quality and consistency of its products. Quality is something that Mr. Mozzie’s is renowned for and even in good times and bad, quality will always sell. “There are always people who are willing to buy quality.”
He also attributes his success to his amazing, dedicated and loyal team of over 40 people. “Some of our staff have been with us for more than 40 years. They are part of our Mr. Mozzie’s family.”
The wholesale division of the business continues to grow. “We supply a large range of lines to hotels and restaurants, places that want the best quality money can buy. That is our kind of customer.” said Warwick Rebeck
The demand for Mr. Mozzie’s quality products reaches far and wide. “We supply most Food Lover’s Market, Spar and Checkers stores in KZN.”
There is also a regular stream of customers from the rest of South Africa and even overseas who make sure that a visit to his stores is a must. “Many of our customers come to buy vacuum-packed specialities including biltong to take to Mr. Mozzie’s fans who now live overseas and miss our products!”
Over the past few years the Hot Deli has become a “Hot” favourite in Durban. Their wide selection of meats include their Boerewors Rolls for just R15.90, Roasted Eisbeins, Roasted Turkey Drumsticks, Bacon-wrapped Frankfurters, Grilled Lamb Chops and much more.
When asked about an interesting fact, request or story that not many people knew, he quickly responded “We have at least one car per year taking out the robot in front of the Argyle Road store and almost landing in the shop! We’ve actually had one or two end up inside the shop over the years!”
So, the next time you are at the intersection, slow down, turn left into the parking at the back of the store and experience the quality and taste of a Proudly Durban Business.
You can visit Mr. Mozzie’s at their flagship store in Argyle Road Store or at the La Lucia Mall or check out their website www.mrmozzies.co.za or like them on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.