US billionaire extends NZ wine interests

14th August, 2012 by Richard Ross

New Zealand Wine Company shareholders approve Foley’s move to take over brands and winery.

Bill Foley

US billionaire Bill Foley has received shareholder approval to take control of the New Zealand Wine Company, giving him ownership of the premium wine brands Grove Mill, Frog Haven and Sanctuary.

The move by Foley Family Wines saves the New Zealand company from an uncertain future at the hands of the banks and will allow it to clear substantial debts.

The merger involves a cash payment of six million NZ dollars ($4.84 million) and an exchange of company shares, giving Foley an 80% stake in the company.

Foley Family Wines has wine assets across California and Washington State, and in New Zealand already owns Vavasour, Goldwater, Clifford Bay and Dashwood, as well as the Wharekauhau luxury lodge in the Wairarapa.

The proposal still requires approval from New Zealand’s Overseas Investment Office.

 

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