Rémy-Cointreau (owner of Rémy-Martin) have finalised the sale of their champagne division, Piper-Heidsieck and Charles-Heidsieck to the EPI Group.  For a reported sum of €412 million the sale also includes the sparkling wine Piper Sonoma.

EPI will also pay a purchase price for the shares, which is believed to be around €146.3 million, with an immediate payment of €71.3 million.  Rémy-Cointreau has granted a seller’s loan for a period of nine years for the remaining shares price.

Piper Heidsieck Champagne

The two companies have also signed an agreement for Rémy-Cointreau to continue to distribute the brands.

Jean-Marie Laborde, Chief Executive of Rémy Cointreau, stated:

“The sale is entirely consistent with the acceleration of our value strategy, which focuses on our international Liqueurs & Spirits brands and businesses. The proceeds of the sale will enable us to fund our development in major markets of today as well as in markets with strong potential for future growth.  I am obviously very pleased that both our groups, Rémy-Cointreau and EPI, wish to develop an efficient and productive distribution partnership.”

The EPI Group is a family owned concern headed by Christopher Descours, and the company prides itself on carrying out a diversified investment policy.  They own some upmarket trade names in the French luxury goods market – such as JM Weston, Alain Figaret and Michel Perry, as well as Château La Verrerie.

Mr Descours stated “This new initiative will strengthen our commitment to wine-making, initiated 20 years ago with Chateau La Verrerie (Lubéron.)  Given the very favourable environment for the Champagne market, this acquisition represents an exceptional opportunity.”

Indeed, in the 12 months turnover up until 31 March 2011, the champagne’s division was up 7.2% on the previous years to €103.6 million.

It is expected that the deal will be finalised by the beginning of the summer.

Sources: www.finanzen.net, online.wsj.com, www.thedrinksbusiness.com

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Rémy-Cointreau Sells Champagne Division Piper-Heidsieck for €412 million

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Jacki has been with Cognac Expert from virtually the beginning. She's the senior editor of the blog, and has spent much of her life living in rural France. Today she's based back in the UK, where she splits her working life between writing for Cognac Expert and working as a Paramedic at a large regional hospital.

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