Teachers pension plan uncorks Canadian wine business acquisition for just over $1B

The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan revealed Monday it is buying the Canadian operations of U.S. alcohol company Constellation Brands for $1.03 billion.

The purchase will see Teachers acquire Mississauga, Ont.-based Constellation Brands Canada, which holds three commercial wineries, five estate wineries, and 163 Wine Rack stores throughout Ontario.

The pension plan said Constellation’s Canadian division has approximately three times the market share of its closest competitor and seven of the top 20 wine brands in the Canadian market.

Constellation Brands’ labels include Inniskillin, Jackson-Triggs, Kim Crawford, Robert Mondavi, Ruffino, Sawmill Creek and Wallaroo Trail.

Constellation is “already the undisputed market leader in the Canadian wine industry and has excellent potential for continued growth and value creation,” said Jane Rowe, who is senior vice-president of private capital at Teachers.

Based in Victor, N.Y., Constellation Brands said it announced plans back in April to explore an initial public offering for part of its Canadian wine business.

“We seized the opportunity to sell the entire business in a value-enhancing transaction when it presented itself,” said Rob Sands, Constellation Brands’ president and chief executive officer.

Constellation Brands acquired the Inniskillin and Jackson-Triggs wines back in 2006, when it acquired Vincor in a $1.52 billion takeover.

Article source: