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Billionaire Bill Foley to take control of NZ Wine Co

Friday 29th June 2012

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Foley Family Wines, owned by the California-based billionaire Bill Foley, is to take control of New Zealand Wine Company, adding the Grove Mill, Sanctuary and Frog Haven brands to its suite of local wines.

The merger which will see Foley take an 80 percent stake in NZ Wines Co., and is subject to shareholder approval and consent from the Overseas Investment Office, the company said in a statement. Shareholder will vote at a special meeting on Aug. 14.

In December, Marlborough-based NZ Wines agreed to undertake a capital raising process for a minimum of $5 million to reduce its debt. ANZ National Bank has confirmed the merger agreement satisfies its requirements.

Foley already owns the luxurious Wairarapa Wharekauhau estate and is chairman of two Fortune 500 companies, insurance firm Fidelity National and banking and payments technology company, Fidelity National Information Services.

NZ Wines shares are listed on the NZX alternative market and last traded at 85 cents.

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