Boisset acquires Skalli: During Tough Economic Times, Wine Industry Consolidates
At the end of Vinexpo 2011, you may have read on www.vitabella.fr the rumours heard during wine tastings (read here). Last June, the rumour was strong: "Chut, ne le dites pas but Skalli could be acquired by Castel". In fact, it was making sense as Castel Group – leader of the beer market in several African countries, market leader for spring water in France with the Cristaline brand and leader of the segment of branded wines in the French market – could have been interested in acquiring Skalli « The flagship Family of southern French wines ». But, at that time, the Skalli Family immediately denied these rumours.
With a major focus on french wines from Burgundy and South of France - also with some estates in California - the Boisset Family Estates' strategy has evolved over the last ten years towards the development of a stronger business in fine wines. Strong at the low end in Burgundy, they decided to make more expensive wines under estate names like Domaine de la Vougeraie or Jean Claude Boisset. Do they plan to do so in other regions? Not true yet, they may think about the same strategy in the South of France and acquire a few big names or make their own new high-end brands.
By acquiring Skalli, not only Boisset confirms its increasing power in the wine business but also shows how much they are determined to strentgthen their Southern French wine sales. With Skalli, they decided to buy Caves St-Pierre, Couleurs du Sud and Fortant de France. Among others, these brands add to La Chasse du Pape, Fat Bastard and Wild Pig that Boisset acquired through Gabriel Meffre, a specialist in wines from the Rhône Valley and the south of France and best-known outside France for its mass-market brands.
With this new acquisition and an already existing powerful brand portfolio from the South of France and Burgundy (Monmessin, Bouchard Ainé...), Boisset strengthens their position as a major player internationally that can sell well marketed and affordable bottles to hypermarkets, retail chains and other distribution networks. In fact, this achievement positions Boisset Family Estates in a new category: the new category of strong international wine business players. And at the same time, it helps Boisset to attract the eyeballs of an increasing number of big international players that are looking to acquire a major player in France...
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