Fosters markets wine sales, as industry turns sour
Foster’s Group has launched a marketing campaign for its 31 vineyards and two wineries, in an effort to sell $800 million worth of the nation’s unwanted wine assets.
Industry experts predict more could be sold as the wine industry struggles under the triple whammy of the high dollar, oversupply and tough export markets.
The company announced in February that the assets to be sold, including 1000ha of California vineyards, were valued at $243 million.
It also indicated that the sales and a restructure of three US wineries, costing $60 million a year, would produce savings of more than $100 million a year from 2010.
Industry valuer and agent Colin Gaetjens, of Gaetjens Langley, suggested that the industry had been struggling even before the global financial crisis hit.
“There is a great deal on the market and a lot more is likely to be on the market if vendors think the market will pay the price,” said Gaetjens.
Foster’s sales portfolio includes 4000ha of vineyards, including the historic 2000-tonne crush Baileys of Glenrowan winery.
It adds to a portfolio of 17 vineyards and two wineries which Constellation Wines Australia is still trying to sell, having sold its Goundrey winery in WA and six vineyards since 2008.
The wine industry woes have led Constellation Australia president John Grant to call for a 20 percent reduction in production, with the brand already cutting about 300 of a planned 350 jobs from its 1500 workforce.