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Origin Wines take on Orbital

Published:  23 July, 2008

South Africa's Origin Wines has beaten off more than 20 bidders for Orbital Wines.

Harpers can exclusively reveal Origin will now take on Orbital's assets including Stormhoek, Walkers Pass in California, Australia's Camden Park and smaller brands, for an undisclosed sum.

Bernard Fontannaz, MD of Origin Wines told, he did not want the "issues" associated with taking on the business after it went into administration in December.

"By taking on the assets of the company we have avoided getting tangled up with legal issues and taking on deals we are not comfortable with."

Fontannaz said he was also not required to take on any of the Orbital staff.

Origin has already worked with Orbital in the past, bottling its production, and also bottles for Constellation's South African brand Kumala.

"Stormhoek has suffered but there is huge potential. Over the next month we will look to see what we can salvage. I am very confident and chuffed that we got it," he said.

Origin produces more than nine-million litres of wine each year and owns the biggest Fairtrade brand in the world, Fairhills.