Bordeaux co-operative union Unidor (Union des Caves Coopératives de la Dordogne)  has acquired Bergerac-based trader, Socav, one of its major customers.

With an annual turnover of around EUR13m (US$20.1m), Socav had previously been part of Oenoalliance, a union of six family wine merchants specialising in Bordeaux and Languedoc Roussillon wines. However, the company was the only one of the six members making up Oenoallaince which was not acquired by Castel last month (just-drinks 8 May 2008).

"Unidor had already agreed to buy Socav several months before Castel's bid for Oenoalliance," Unidor's director, Christian Coudon, told just-drinks on Wednesday.

Bergerac wines account for around 50% of the 6m bottles marketed annually by Socav, while the remainder includes Bordeaux châteaux and Grands Crus Classés. Some 80% of this global volume is sold through French supermarket chains and 20% exported. 

"The acquisition of Socav will take our sales activities to a new level. One of the five members of Unidor, the Cave de Sigoulès, currently markets around 4m bottles annually so together with Socav we will raise our offering to 10m bottles and the objective over the next five years is to raise this to 15m bottles annually," Coudon added.