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The Daumas Gassac vineyards, that belong to Aime Guibert, are seen September 14, 2000, in the southern region of Aniane, France. On July 25, 2000, the Aniane town council voted 15-2 to allow Robert Mondavi, a U.S. vintner, to develop 50 hectares of vineyards under a long-term lease that may extend up to 99 years.
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Sep. 12, 2008
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U.S. Wine Major Coming to Russia
Constellation Brands, owner of the Hardys, Robert Modavi and Paul Masson, the largest producer and seller of wine in the world, will register a subsidiary in Russia. The American company intends to spend $2.4 million annually on advertising on the local market.
Constellation Russia will be a wholly-owned subsidiary of Constellation Europe, the companys European division. The current distributor of Constellation products will retain the exclusive rights to sales of Constellations Hardys brand (Australia), Robert Mondavi (California, U.S.A) and Nobilo (New Zealand). In addition to wines, Constellation produces and sells Black Velvet whiskey (the third most popular in the United States) and Svedka vodka. Its gross sales in the 2008 financial year (ending February 28) were $4.9 billion, with a net loss of $613 million. Its capitalization is $4.04 billion.

According to Business Analytica market research agency, New World wine occupied 5 percent of the Russia market of 313 million liters in 2007. Constellation Europe estimates the New World wine segment of the Russian market at 1-2 million cases (9-18 million liters). Constellation Europe president Troy Christensen said that the company is turning from its mature markets the U.S., Great Britain, Canada and Australia to countries with opportunities for intensive growth.

The average retail price of a 0.75-liter bottle of Constellation wine in Russia will be 250 rubles. It forecasts sales of 2.4 million bottles this year. Whitehall may double its wine sales in three to four years with advertising support from Constellation. The Russian wine market has no brands with outstanding images, and vintners now spend most of their promotional money on trade marketing.
www.kommersant.com

All the Article in Russian as of Sep. 12, 2008

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