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US: Accolade Wines brings North America distribution in-house

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Accolade Wines is moving the distribution of its Australian brands in North America in-house, away from Constellation Brands. 

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Its North America unit will take responsibility for all sales, marketing and distribution of Hardys, Banrock Station, Tintara, Whiskers Blake Port and Trackers Crossing, with immediate effect, the global wine group said today (1 October). Accolade was formed last year, after Constellation sold its Australian and UK wine operations to Sydney-based private equity group CHAMP.  

Constellation had solely distributed the brands in the US since 2003 and prior to this they were part of the Pacific Wine Partners portfolio, a JV between BRL Hardy and Constellation, from 2001 to 2003. 

Accolade's North America MD, Tim Matz, said the company will now offer "additional resources" to grow the brands in the US. 

He added: "We believe there is significant room for growth on the existing Australian brands as well as new ones we will be launching in the near future." 

The group said the change "will not affect current arrangements" involving the distribution of Accolade and Constellation Brands in other markets.

In August, Accolade announced a shake-up of its European management structure, which saw the business split into two divisons and its Europe general manager, James Lousada, leave the company.


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