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Published:  23 July, 2008

By Nicolas Belfrage MW & Franco Ziliani

Trentino co-operative Cantina La-Vis is continuing its expansion with the 100% takeover of Casa Girelli. This follows the acquisition in recent years of Cesarini Sforza Spumanti and Maso Franch in Trentino and of Poggio Morino in Tuscany, as well as the merger in 2003 with the Trentino co-operative Valle di Cembra. La-Vis - based in Lavis, north of Trento - currently has 1,300 growers, produces more than five million bottles a year, and aims to double its production. Over the past 15 years Casa Girelli, under the tutelage of Marina and Stefano Girelli, has expanded significantly, penetrating 42 foreign markets, including the UK, the US, Germany, Scandinavia, Holland and Canada. Current turnover is around e40 million, and production is around 20 million bottles. Casa Girelli also controls FWI, importers and distributors in the US market, and Villa Cafaggio, the prestigious Chianti Classico producer. Everything about this acquisition makes sense for Cantina La-Vis and Casa Girelli,' commented Roberto Giacomoni, president of La-Vis. It allows us to make new alliances in Italy and abroad. The object is to reinforce our presence and to develop new commercial opportunities on international markets.' Stefano Girelli remarked: With direct access to the resources of La-Vis, Casa Girelli's brands can develop further, benefiting from this extensive portfolio of quality grape varieties.' The takeover will not affect distribution of Casa Girelli wines in the UK. It's business as usual,' commented Jim Furze, commercial director of HwCg, which acquired distribution rights a few months ago.