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Family regains control of Taittinger

The Taittinger family is set to return to part-ownership of its Champagne house, agreeing to buy a 37% stake from  Crédit Agricole.

The Société du Louvre, which included Champagne Taittinger, was acquired by Starwood Capital Group in July 2005, but the American company announced intention to focus primarily on the group’s luxury hotels. Following numerous international offers last year, Crédit Agricole stepped in, keeping the Champagne house in French hands. This new deal with the Taittinger family, announced at the end of last year, and reportedly worth €200 million, will reduce Crédit Agricole’s stake to 20%. This leaves 43% available for other investors.

The house, established in 1734, was originally bought by the Taittinger family in 1932. Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger, the head of the dynasty, continued to manage Champagne Taittinger throughout the period that it was owned by Starwood, and then by Crédit Agricole. He has been quoted saying that "The family is going to play a very active role in this business" as well as ensuring that "Taittinger remains completely tied to the Champagne region".

© db 3 January 2007

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