Evans & Tate, the Australian listed wine company, is looking to move into the US market once more, possibly through a joint venture or acquisition, it was reported today.

Comments by executive chairman Franklin Tate in theage.com indicated that an acquisition or investment, possibly in an importing business, could be finalised in the next three months.

It had been thought the company had scrapped plans to move on the US to focus on the domestic market. But Franklin said: "For a while we didn't have enough material to supply the market, but now we do."

The Company yesterday announced that it had exceeded prospectus forecasts for EBIT and operating profit for the year end 30 June 2001. Operating profit after income tax was up 49.9% on the previous year to A$2.7m. Sales, meanwhile were up 18.6% to A$23.1m.

Tate said that several significant projects would drive the future growth in the next year, including an increased focus on wine quality and brand strength and the continued exploration of key acquisition opportunities both domestically and internationally.

The company also said it would increase activities in export markets.