Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Constellation divests Canadian wine division

screen-shot-2016-10-19-at-1-49-29-pmConstellation Brands, the Victor, NY-based international beverage corporation, has sold its Canadian wine business for $1.03 billion Canadian (about $785 million U.S.).

The sale includes such Canadian wine brands such as Jackson-Triggs and Inniskillin, a variety of wineries, vineyards, offices, facilities, and Wine Rack brand retail stores. Constellation retains ownership of Black Velvet Whisky and its production facility in Alberta Province.

This is the second major deal for Constellation this fall. It recently announced the purchase of High West Distillery, a Utah company that produces a range of whiskeys. And, it recently acquired a minority stake in Bardstown Bourbon Company, one of the biggest new U.S whiskey distilleries.

“With the acquisition of High West and the opportunity to work with Bardstown Bourbon Company, we are strategically advancing our spirits business with access to high-quality supply and state-of the-art production capabilities,” said Constellation CEO Robert Sands.

Constellation's vast holdings include numerous popular brands, including Woodbridge, Mark West, Clos du Bois, Manischewitz, Robert Mondavi and Ruffino wines; Svedka Vodka, and Modelo and Corona beers.

In explaining the decision to sell its Canadian wine division, Sands said, “In April, we announced plans to explore an initial public offering (IPO) for a portion of our Canadian wine business as part of our strategy to focus on premium, high margin and high growth brands. [Instead] we seized the opportunity to sell the entire business in a value-enhancing transaction when it presented itself. The Canadian wine business is the leader in the Canadian wine market and is a long-term growth opportunity."

The purchaser is the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, the largest single-profession pension plan in Canada.

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