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US: Southern Wine & Spirits, Glazer's ditch joint venture plans

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Southern Wine & Spirits of America and Glazer's Distributors have abandoned their proposed distribution venture.

The two US companies said yesterday (21 September) that they have terminated discussions due to "the sheer complexity of the transaction".

The firms had announced back in August last year that they had signed a deal to form a new national distribution venture, which would have covered 38 states and have handled 80% of wine and spirits volumes in the US.

"Following more than a year of wide-ranging planning efforts with Southern Wine & Spirits, we have made the decision that it is in our company's long-term best interests to end these meetings and discussions," said Glazer's chairman & CEO, Bennett Glazer. "Since August 2008, we have explored numerous options and concepts about how best to forge an association with Southern to generate enhanced value for both companies. However, our decision today has been driven by the sheer complexity of the transaction."

Southern's chairman & CEO, Harvey Chaplin, added: "Today's decision was a very difficult one. We continue to hold the Glazer's Family - and all that their company has accomplished over the last 100 years - in high regard."

Both Southern and Glazer's said that they will independently look to seek opportunities to grow and expand their businesses going forward.

Last year, Southern's president & COO, Wayne Chaplin, told just-drinks that the two had agreed to work together due to "the continued growth of both the national on- and off-premise chains". The economic slowdown, however, has seen both channels take a battering in the last 12 months.


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