Constellation Brands has received approval from Industry Canada for its potential acquisition of Vincor International.

In addition, Constellation has received a "no action" letter from Canada's Competition Bureau, further clearing the way for the acquisition, the company said yesterday (23 November).

"The statutory waiting period in the US under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 has expired so that the Act poses no barrier to Constellation proceeding with the acquisition," the company said. "Constellation Brands does not expect to encounter any regulatory barriers to close the transaction to acquire Vincor."

During its review, under the Investment Canada Act, Constellation agreed to a number of negotiated enforceable commitments consistent with its intentions to grow Vincor's business. These commitments assisted the Minister of Industry in determining that the investment is of net benefit to Canada.

"Constellation intends to support the growth of Vincor's Canadian business domestically and internationally," the company continued. "Its management has also provided commitments regarding the maintenance of all Vincor's wineries, warehouses and vineyards in Canada, as well as to maintain virtually the same management teams at those facilities.

"Upon successful completion of the transaction, Constellation Brands plans to integrate Vincor into its international wine business as expeditiously as possible."

Vincor yesterday removed its shareholder rights plan, the so-called 'poison pill' strategy but said it still firmly believed its shareholders would reject Constellation's US$1.2bn bid.