The KWV Board has given ground on the number of shares to be allocated by the KWV Group to a newly proposed co-operative structure, following intensive negotiations with a small but powerful group of shareholders.

Instead of a 15% stake in the 390 million shares in KWV Limited it has accepted that 10% would be equitable, while the dissenting shareholders - also known as the "Group of Five" - who ironically between them have about a 15% share, accepted that Wijngaard's services proposal should be funded to the tune of R8 million a year for five years and not 10 years.

This was announced at a media conference in Paarl today by KWV Chairman, Lourens Jonker, who also said KWV Limited would have an option to purchase Wijngaard's shares should the co-operative decide to sell or alienate these shares in any other fashion.

"The effect of these steps is that the A shareholders benefit through less dilution of their shareholding, but that young and future farmers will still, through Wijngaard Co-operative, have an interest in the KWV," said Jonker.