Ferngrove Vineyards is the subject of a A$10.1m (US$7.68m) capital raising. Media and wine entrepreneur Jack Bendat, who bought Goundry Wines in 1995 before selling it to Vincor International for A$62.5m, has underwritten the raising, The Australian reported yesterday (17 August).

Ferngrove is hoping to fund growth and reduce its debt to just 20%, the newspaper noted.

Bendat, whose company JMB is backing the renounceable offer, will take a stake in the wine producer in the deal.

Speaking to The Australian, Bendat said: "They will be one of the lowest-gearing wine companies after they complete this capital raising."

The offer involves 7.75% reset converting preference shares at 80c each, bundled with two partly-paid ordinary shares also issued at 80c, for every three shares held.

The newspaper also quoted Ferngrove chairman Peter Mansell saying: "I'm confident that, after this, we won't have to run back to investors, barring an acquisition."