WA businessman and major wine producer Peter Fogarty has acquired control of leading wine brand Evans & Tate from the Mcwilliam’s Wine Group.
The move cements Mr Fogarty’s position as the State’s biggest wine producer, with the acquisition more than doubling his annual production.
Mr Fogarty, a former corporate lawyer and one-tie boss of smartcard-maker ERG, now controls more than 50 per cent of the total Margaret River wine production. This year his total crush in WA was more than 11,500 tonners, most of which was Margaret River fruit.
The group’s production will rise to 600,000 cases, of which more than 400,000 cases will be under the Evans & Tate Brand.
The Fogarty Wine Group will take Evans & Tate into its portfolio of wine brands, which includes Deep Woods, Millbrook and Smithbrook in WA and Lakes Folly in the NSW Hunter Valley. Evans & Tate brands and assets will be combined with Margaret River Vintners, which is jointly owned by the Fogarty Wine Group and Mcwilliam’s.
The acquisition will allow Evans & Tate to be re-established as a single WA-owned business, allowing McWilliam’s to focus on its wine assets in the Eastern States.
Margaret River Vintners, which owns 379ha of vineyards, is Margaret River’s biggest wine processing business with tank storage of 11 million litres and storage capacity of 4000 barrels.
Mr. Fogarty is chairman of the Fogarty Wine Group and Margaret River Vintres.
Evans & Tate was established in the Swan Valley in 1968 by John Tate and John Evans. It became a publicly listed company in 1999, embarking on a major acquisition and expansion program in other States that ultimately stretched it too far and it collapses in 2007.