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New Finance For The Wine Biz: REIT Money Steps In As Banks Beg For Bailouts – CEO Talks Strategy, Deal Size, Type, Location

The wine industry’s largest player in sale/leaseback financing for wineries, and vineyards — Entertainment Properties Trust (NYSE: EPR) — is currently looking for more high-quality wine deals.

EPR has made recent headlines with its pivotal roles in a number of major fine-wine transactions including Carneros Vintners, and Ascentia, in Sonoma County; EOS Estate in Paso Robles, CA; Napa Valley’s Cosentino Winery and Duncan Peak in Hopland, CA.

David M. Brain,  President & Chief Executive Officer or EPT, shares his strategy with WII: the types of deals the company is looking for, their size, location, characteristics and the decision path that led them to wine.


Entertainment Properties Trust is a real estate investment trust (REIT) with more than $2.6 billion in real estate assets. It began life with sale/leaseback arrangements with AMC movie theaters and quickly became the largest owner of megaplex movie theaters in America. It diversified into entertainment retail centers, as well as other destination recreational and specialty investments including vineyards and wineries.

While its stock price has been hammered like every other publicly traded security, EPR continues to pay dividends to its shareholders and continues to raise funds for acquisitions, including those in the wine industry.

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WII: Why the wine industry? That seems like a departure from your previous “core” investments.

WII: How does the wine industry measure up to these standards?

WII: What’s the inflection opportunity in wine?

WII: Enduring Value?

WII: Excellent Execution?

WII: Attractive Economics?

WII: Advantageous Position?

WII: Who’s your ideal client?

WII: What size deals? What’s too small? What’s Too big?

WII: How about high-profile wineries?

WII: Are you looking just at The West Coast? How about offshore?

WII: How about bankruptcy deals?