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Cali’s Kosta Browne gets new owner

A US-based private investment firm has bought a majority stake in cult Californian winery Kosta Browne.

(L-R) Kosta Browne founders Dan, Chris and Michael

The Kosta Browne Winery, in Sebastopol, confirmed this week that its previous majority shareholder, The Vincraft Group, had been bought out by the Boston-based JW Childs Associates. Financial details of the transaction have not been disclosed.

The winery has built up a cult following for its Pinot Noir, produced from top Californian regions including Russian River Valley, Sonoma Coast and Santa Lucia Highlands, with bottles selling for $100.

Michael Browne, winemaker and Kosta Browne co-founder said: “We are making some of our best wines yet, but still believe we have a long way to go toward achieving our vision for California Pinot Noir. I’ve known John Childs for several years, as he was an original investor in our CIRQ Estate, and I know that he and his team share the same passion for our unwavering commitment to quality and investing to support the growth of our business.”

Kosta Browne was founded in 1997 by Dan Kosta and Michael Browne with Chris Costello joining as a partner 2001. The Vincraft Group joined as investment partners in 2009, which was followed by the building of a new winemaking facility and Kosta Browne’s first vineyard acquisition in 2013 with the purchase of 20 acres at the Keefer Ranch Vineyard.

Dan Kosta said: “We are very grateful for Vincraft’s stewardship over the last five years. Today, we have an incredible opportunity to continue elevating the quality of our wines and our brand. I’m thrilled to continue doing what I love – building relationships and connecting with the many people who have made this journey possible.”

Adam Suttin, J.W. Childs Associates Partner, said the firm was “extremely excited to support this iconic winery”.

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