January 18, 2005 |
Foster's Group Ltd.'s 3.1- billion-Australian-dollar ($2.4-billion) hostile bid for Southcorp Ltd. is a "mistake" because it's paying too much to buy a company that's recovering from a record loss, while trying to boost earnings at its own wine unit, brokers including Merrill Lynch & Co. said. Foster's offer for Southcorp is "a poor decision, and we believe that the takeover bid isn't in the best interests of shareholders," said David Errington, an analyst with Merrill Lynch in Sydney.
January 17, 2005 |
Foster's Group Ltd., Australia's biggest brewer and winemaker, today offered $1.9 billion for the rest of rival Southcorp Ltd. to gain control of top-selling Australian wine brands such as Penfolds and Rosemount. The offer by the Melbourne-based company represents the same share price it paid last week to the family interests of Robert Oatley, Rosemount's founder, for an 18.8% stake. Southcorp, based in Sydney, rejected the buyout offer as "inadequate and opportunistic."
March 9, 2004 |
Golden State Vintners Inc. said Monday that it planned to sell to a management group led by Chief Executive Jeffrey O'Neill for $96 million in the latest transaction to signal that California's $14-billion wine industry is rebounding. In the last two weeks, for example, two small Sonoma County wineries were sold to investment teams: Everett Ridge Vineyard & Winery and Topolos Winery for $2.5 million and $3.5 million, respectively. And on Monday, the U.S.
January 14, 2003 |
A vintner from Down Under may be close to putting Constellation Brands Inc. on top, unseating E. & J. Gallo Winery of Modesto as the world's largest wine company. Constellation, based in Fairport, N.Y., said Monday that it is in talks to acquire top Australian wine producer BRL Hardy Ltd. but didn't disclose terms. If the deal is completed, Constellation would become No. 1, with about $1.7 billion in annual wine sales, eclipsing Gallo's $1.4 billion.
March 28, 2003 |
Shares of Robert Mondavi Corp., one of California's largest winemakers, fell 6% on Thursday, a day after the company forecast a quarterly loss and said it would eliminate 10% of its workforce and introduce two low-price labels to try to reverse its sagging fortunes. The disclosures late Wednesday sent Mondavi's stock plummeting to a seven-year low of $18.53 in Nasdaq trading Thursday before it rebounded to close at $21.63, down $1.34.
September 1, 2002 |
First came the dot-com bust, wiping out their big-spending Silicon Valley customers. Then, the sobering attacks of Sept. 11 almost brought their sales to a standstill. Even now, with a sluggish economy depressing demand and a global grape glut threatening to flood the U.S. market, California's luxury winemakers refuse to admit that the party's over.