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Foley strikes deal to expand New Zealand wine holdings

  • 8/10/2010: C6:
    6/23/2010: A1:
    PC: Bill Foley is the chairman of Foley Family Wines, which recently acquired Chalk Hill Estate Winery, and acquired Sebastiani Vineyards and Winery in 2008.

Foley Family Wines, the fast-growing Healdsburg wine company, announced a deal Friday to acquire a controlling stake in The New Zealand Wine Co.

Terms were not disclosed. The agreement, which still needs approval from regulators and New Zealand Wine shareholders, would give Foley 80 percent of the company and access to nearly 500 acres of vineyards in Marlborough.

"This merger is a key component to our New Zealand strategy," owner Bill Foley said in a statement. "The strong growth of our New Zealand wine brands, along with a couple of short vintages has left us challenged to meet our demand. With this plan we will gain much needed supply, as well as the Grove Mill, Sanctuary and Frog Haven brands to add to our robust portfolio."

It is the latest acquisition for Foley, who entered the wine business in 1996 and now owns more than a dozen wine brands, including Chalk Hill and Sebastiani in Sonoma County.


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