New Zealand’s largest exporter of New Zealand wine to the US, Constellation Brands New Zealand, has sold its Marlborough-based Riverlands Winery to family-owned Giesen Group.
One of three Constellation-owned wineries in New Zealand, the Riverlands Winery has been part of the company’s portfolio since 2006.
The sale of the winery is planned to settle in mid-December this year, in time for the upcoming 2021 harvest.
Giesen is hopeful all current Riverlands employees will join their team and be part of their future growth plans for the winery.
The ever-increasing US demand for Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc coupled with a decline in Pinot Noir demand has been a key driver in Constellation’s decision to divest the winery, given its suitability to smaller parcel wine production.
Simon Towns, managing director of Constellation Brands New Zealand, says, “For us, the majority of our growth continues to be from Sauvignon Blanc and this divestment allows us to focus our efforts on our state-of-the-art Drylands operation to leverage its full efficiency in growing high-end Sauvignon Blanc”.
The purchase of the Riverlands Winery is a key step in Giesen’s strategic planning, allowing it to continue growing the domestic and global footprint the company has been evolving over the last 40 years.
Giesen Group sees this next phase for the New Zealand export community as a very exciting time, with the growth of the NZ Inc brand and the continued expansion of consumers’ ongoing love affair with New Zealand’s very unique wine style of Sauvignon Blanc.
Simon adds, “It’s an exciting time for the Kiwi wine industry with global demand continuing to grow and we’re delighted to have sold Riverlands to such a reputable wine company with an equally impressive track record and growth projections”.
“We know our small team of talented staff will continue to thrive under their leadership.”
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