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Wine firms consult over merger

Published:  14 December, 2009

A merger between Constellation Brands and Australian Vintage could be a step nearer following reports that both companies have asked for informal clearance for the deal.

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission has been sounded out about the merger, which would see Constellation's Australian and UK operations join forces with those of Australian Vintage.

The submission does not necessarily mean that the deal will proceed, but it could mean that a merger goes ahead more smoothly if talks between the companies reach a successful conclusion.

Australian Vintage, originally known as McGuigan Simeon, recorded a loss of A$123.64 million for 2008-09, according to the Sydney Morning Herald, following a long period of restructuring.

Constellation, for its part, recently axed 350 jobs from its Australian and also closed some of its wineries.