Southcorp Wines and Rosemount Estates have confirmed that 90 senior staff will lose their jobs as part of a review of operations following the merger of the two wine companies.

"The cost of the redundancies will be some $A6.3m ($3.13m) with annualised savings of some $A10.6m ($5.27m) to take effect FY02," Southcorp Wines spokesman, Brian Dale told

"Immediately after the Southcorp Wines and Rosemount Estates merger, chief executive of Southcorp Wines, Keith Lambert ordered a full review of operations, with a zero based approach. In other words we began with a clean sheet of paper, allowed senior management to determine what organisational structures would be put in place to carry the company forward.

"There were obvious areas of duplication, with two wine companies operating sometimes with wineries close by. Also bringing administration, sales, marketing, winemaking, winery operations and vineyards into one combined and enlarged company, there were areas for increased efficiencies," he added.

Winemaking, under the direction of Philip Shaw and John Duvall has also been re-structured and a more de-centralised approach has been taken. Duvall will be responsible for the premium Penfolds brands and Philip Shaw will be responsible for all other brands.

The redundancies, which are mainly in middle and upper management, will be spread across all operations - Australia, UK, Europe and US.