The CEO of the newly merged wine business of Southcorp and Rosemount Wines said today that the merger had gone ahead to stop the world's spirits giants mounting a takeover bid of the Southcorp business. Chief executive Keith Lambert said: "The major spirit companies had operated to their head room after the Seagram sale so wine would start to attract the spirits companies. This we felt would be detrimental to Australian wine and detrimental to us in a supply and distribution sense.