Accolade Wines is one of the world's leading premium wine companies. It is the #1 wine producer and exporter from Australia, and the local market leader in the UK, a key market for Australian wines. Total volumes for 2017 were around 38m cases, split between a little over 50 brands from different New World markets. The group's biggest Australian-produced brand is Hardys, one of the world's top ten by volume with sales of around 9m cases annually. It is supported by Banrock Station, Grant Burge and others. Key California wines include Echo Falls, Atlas Peak and Geyser Peak. Other important brands include Kumala from South Africa and Chile's Anakena. Blended wine brand Stowell's is the UK's top-seller in the on-trade. The business was formed in 2010 by the demerger of the Hardy Wine Company of Australia as well as various European businesses then owned by US-based Constellation Brands, which had accumulated a substantial international wine portfolio over a series of years. Following independence, Accolade expanded its portfolio further with a series of acquisitions including several US wines, while also divesting several non-core activities, including its remaining stake in Matthew Clark, a UK-based distribution and cider joint venture. Accolade's biggest rival both domestically and internationally is countrymate Treasury Wines Estates. Private equity owner CHAMP had been expected to issue an IPO of the business in 2017; instead it sold it on in 2018 to US private equity firm Carlyle for A$1bn. They appointed former SABMiller executive Ari Mervis as executive chairman.
Capsule checked 23rd October 2018
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Adbrands Weekly Update 12th Apr 2018: Australian wine producer Accolade - owner of Hardy's, Banrock Station and other brands - has changed hands again and this time former owner Constellation Brands has taken the opportunity to offload its remaining 20% stake in the business. Constellation originally bought the Hardy's wine group in 2003 - just as the Australian wine business was passing its peak into over-supply. It proved an expensive error, and Constellation sold 80% of the business, along with some other assets, to Australian private equity firm CHAMP in 2011. Now CHAMP and Constellation are both cashing out, selling Accolade to a Chinese subsidiary of US private equity giant Carlyle for around $770m, more than twice the 2011 valuation. Volumes are around 35m cases.
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