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Constellation circles Vincor

Published:  23 July, 2008

Constellation Brands has been rejected in its hostile takeover bid for Canadian wine giant Vincor, which bought UK agent and distributor Western Wines last year.

Vincor, North America's fourth-largest wine producer, said the C$1.4 billion (675 million) all-cash offer, equivalent to $31 a share, was opportunistic'. We don't feel it reflects Vincor's growth prospects in the near and medium term.'

Reports in the Canadian financial press suggest Vincor is currently in talks with five potential bidders, with the Canadian company looking for bids at around $36 to $40 a share.

Suggested bidders include Diageo, Brown Forman, Foster's Group, Castel Frres, E&J Gallo and Henkell & Sohnlein.

Constellation CEO Richard Sands said that they would be willing to increase their bid should Vincor co-operate, but they would not be willing to match Vincor's valuation.

We would not pay $36 a share. In our opinion, there isn't anyone who will pay what Vincor has alluded to.'

Vincor's brands include Inniskillin, Jackson-Triggs, Kim Crawford, RH Phillips and Kumala.