Groupe Charlois Acquires Winemakers Cooperage from Treasury Wine EstatesFiled under News on Wednesday, March 16, 2011.
Winemakers Cooperage (WC), established by Treasury Wine Estates in Cloverdale in 1999, has been acquired by Groupe Charlois (GC), the French producer of such notable brands as Saury, Leroi, Ermitage and Berthomieu.
WC, with a current capacity of up to 33,000 barrels annually, has been producing French and American Oak barrels for various Treasury Wine Estates brands, including Beringer. Under the new owners, the cooperage will become a Treasury Wine Estates supplier, and joint research projects will continue. Terms of the sale were not released. WC employees will move with the company to GC.
Groupe Charlois (GC) is the first cooperage group to be fully integrated, controlling quality from production of the staves through barrel-making, sourcing wood from throughout France. GC includes three stave mills in France, five cooperages and a saw mill which can convert wood not used in stave production for other uses. The GC companies are certified ISO 9001 for quality and the ISO 14000 environmental certification is in progress. The GC companies are also HACCP certified and they use 100% PEFC wood. Winemakers Cooperage will operate as part of Charlois Cooperages USA, and will ultimately offer barrels using fire, water or steam bending using both American and French oak.
While GC has maintained sales and marketing offices in the United States, this is the first US cooperage, according to Fabrice Gautier, chief executive officer. "The exceptional opportunity presented by Winemakers Cooperage allows us to bring our vision of exceptional quality, sustainability and service to the United States, building on the Charlois family history of enhancing the work of winemakers," he added.
Michael Kluczko, Treasury Wine Estates Senior Vice President Supply/Americas, said the company was pleased to find a true partner in Groupe Charlois. "GC brings added insights and skills that will provide a new level of execution to the cooperage," he explained. "We expect to work closely with GC so our winemakers will have even more choices to enhance the quality of our wines."
Treasury Wine Estates will retain ownership of its existing supply of French oak staves. The purchase includes real property and leases for a 36,000 sq. ft. production facility and related equipment, a 12,000 sq. ft warehouse and 5,000 sq. ft. of office space, all located in Cloverdale, as well as some oak inventory in California, Missouri and France. There are 11 WC employees who will join Groupe Charlois.
About Groupe Charlois
The Charlois family has been working as a merrandier for generations in Nievre, the first oak forest in France. Groupe Charlois includes the Maison Charlois, Nievre Merrain and Normanide Merrains state mills in France, the Malviche saw mill and the Saury, Leroi, Erable, Ermitage and Berthomieu cooperages. It is the largest French Oak stave producer in France, and is the only cooperage group to offer fire, water and steam bending. All GC companies are ISO 9001 certified and ISO 14000 compliance is in progress. All GC companies are also HACCP certified and they use 100% PEFC wood.
About Treasury Wine Estates Americas (TWEA)
Treasury Wine Estates Americas (TWEA) is the premium wine portfolio formerly known as Foster's Wine Estates Americas, a regional division of Foster's Group of Australia. With a proud history that dates back to the 1800's and a legacy marked by the highest commitment to making quality wines and producing strong business returns, TWEA produces and markets an international portfolio of award-winning brands from iconic estates like Beringer Vineyards and Chateau St. Jean in California, Penfolds, Rosemount and Wolf Blass in Australia, Castello di Gabbiano in Italy, and Matua Valley in New Zealand. Many of these estates were founded by pioneers in their regions and continue to craft wines at the forefront of quality, innovation and regional expression.
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