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Foley Family Wines Expands in New Zealand

February 10, 2014

Bill Foley’s growing company of nearly 20 different wine brands in California, Washington and New Zealand has announced its intention to acquire Martinborough Vineyard Estates, Wine Spectator reports. A purchase price wasn’t disclosed; the transaction will result in a stock-for-stock exchange between Martinborough Vineyard Estates and Foley Family Wines, which is a publicly traded company in New Zealand. The deal is expected to be complete by March 31.

“We’re going to become a dominant player in Martinborough,” said Foley, who already owns Te Karinga winery, located near the Martinborough Vineyard Estates. Foley’s extensive holdings in New Zealand include several brands, including Grove Mill and Vavasour. Adding Martinborough Vineyard Estates gives Foley a total of 1,100 acres of vines and 550,000 cases of total production in New Zealand.

Martinborough Vineyard Estates, located in the Martinborough growing region at the southern tip of New Zealand’s North Island, was founded by a small group of investors in 1980. They became the first in the area to plant Pinot Noir, after a report by government scientists declared the climate similar to Burgundy’s. According to Foley, they produce about 30,000 cases annually and own 200 acres of vineyards.

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