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 CrÃ©dit Agricole.
The SociÃ©tÃ© 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 groupâ€™s luxury hotels. Following numerous international offers last year, CrÃ©dit 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 â‚¬200 million, will reduce CrÃ©dit Agricoleâ€™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 CrÃ©dit 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".
Â© db 3 January 2007