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Vintage Wine Estates schools analysts & Shanken: Company not for sale to TWE, but lands $75 Mil investment

Vintage Wine Estates never was on on the block according to Vintage Wine Estates (VWE) CEO/President Pat Roney despite an April 11 article in the Shanken Daily News that stated:

 

“Analysts continue to raise expectations that Treasury Wine Estates (TWE) will soon make a sizeable acquisition in the U.S. According to the Australian Financial Review, Macquarie analysts see TWE acquiring ‘a medium-sized winemaking and marketing company in the U.S.’ and named Vintage Wine Estates and Ste. Michelle Wine Estates as potential targets.”

 

Instead, VWE issued a press release (below) revealing a new minority partner who brings $75 million in growth capital.

 

“We weren’t planning on even announcing this,” Roney told Wine Industry Insight, ” but the Shanken story that said we would be a logical acquisition target for TWE forced us to go on the offensive!”

NEWS RELEASE

Vintage Wine Estates Announces New Investment Partner
AGR Partners will provide growth capital and minority equity to rising wine company

 

April 12, 2018 (Santa Rosa, CA). Pat Roney, CEO/President of Vintage Wine Estates announced that AGR Partners, an investment firm dedicated to food and agribusiness, has provided growth capital through a minority equity stake in the company.
“We are delighted to enter into a partnership with AGR Partners,” commented Roney. “They understand the agricultural nature of our business and are fully on-board with our growth and long-term acquisition strategy.”

 

Already on a rapid-growth trajectory, the $75 million investment by AGR and existing shareholders will help support future winery and brand acquisitions and expansion-related production efficiencies. Recent Vintage Wine Estates acquisitions include Tamarack Cellars (Washington State), Firesteed Vineyards, (Oregon), and the California brands Layer Cake, Cherry Pie and If You See Kay. Over the past several years, Vintage Wine Estates added Cameron Hughes, B.R. Cohn Winery, Swanson Vineyards and Delectus to its growing portfolio of brands and estates.

 

Vintage Wine Estates was founded in 2008 when Pat Roney, owner of Napa Valley’s Girard Winery, purchased Sonoma’s Windsor Vineyards, the wine industry’s first direct-to-consumer brand. Today, Vintage Wine Estates produces close to 2 million cases, owns a collection of wineries and estates, consumer and exclusive wine brands. Vintage Wine Estates markets and sells their wines across multiple channels, including wholesale, direct-to-consumer, tasting rooms, wine clubs, internet, telesales and television.

 

“We are excited to partner with Pat Roney and the Vintage Wine Estates team to support their growth plans,” said Ejnar Knudsen, CEO of AGR Partners. “We look to make long-term investments to support best in class businesses with great partners; our investment in Vintage Wine Estates aligns closely with this goal.”

 

AGR Partners’ portfolio of investments in food and agribusiness companies includes Almark Foods, Ridley, Opal Foods, SEMO Milling, 3D Corporate Solutions, Icicle Seafoods and Tru-Test Group.

 

About Vintage Wine Estates

Vintage Wine Estates is a privately held wine company owned by a group of vintner families with deep roots in the wine business.  The families own a collection of winery estates and brands including Clos Pegase Winery, Cosentino Winery, Girard Winery, B.R. Cohn Winery, Swanson Vineyards, Viansa Sonoma, Windsor Vineyards, Cameron Hughes, Firesteed, Sonoma Coast Vineyards, Clayhouse, Tamarack Cellars, Layer Cake, Cherry Pie, Splinter Group Spirits, Middle Sister, Bar Dog, Girl & Dragon, Purple Cowboy and a number of exclusive wine brands. An industry leader across all sales channels and dedicated to providing wine consumers with a range of wines from $10 to $100 dollars and at many price points in between, Vintage Wine Estates produces outstanding wines from Napa, Sonoma and Mendocino, Paso Robles, Washington State and Oregon. www.vintagewineestates.com

About AGR Partners

AGR Partners is an investment firm based in Davis, California, and Chicago, Illinois, dedicated to backing strong, food company and agribusiness teams through long-term investments of non-controlling equity or subordinated debt to facilitate late-stage growth, strategic acquisitions, full buyouts and ownership transitions.  For further information, visit www.AGRpartners.com