December 12, 2019
I’ve been a fan of wine since I was sent on an assignment in Paris for three weeks back in 1995 and learned to really appreciate red wine in general and Bordeaux in particular. It’s an interesting hobby as you travel to different regions and explore the various foods and cultures and the wines they produce. Given my experience, you can imagine my delight as an analyst when the first publicly traded wine company came to present at our monthly “dog and pony” show. Ravenswood Winery was publicly traded at the time and came to our office with a case of their wine to taste – if you want to impress a group of equity analysts, bringing a case of wine to sample is a winning strategy! It also helped that they made great wines, so we began covering the company until they were acquired by Constellation Brands (Tii:STZ).
Constellation Brands owns a large stable of brands not only in wine (Robert Mondavi, Mount Veeder, Prisoner, Charles Smith and many others), as well as beer and spirit brands. Check out their brands page and see if your favorite brand of wine, beer or spirits is owned by the company. Beyond this large player in the industry, there are a few other publicly traded wine companies that might also be of interest.
Willamette Valley Vineyards (Tii:WVVI) offers some distinct benefits for owners. I learned of them as I am a big fan of Washington Wines, specifically those from the Walla Walla Valley AVA, and I loved the wines of Maison Bleue Winery which was acquired by Willamette Valley Vineyards in 2018. If you are a fan of Oregon Pinot Noir or Washington wines, Willamette Valley Vineyards also offers significant perks for owning their stock, including a 25% discount on wine purchases and VIP winery tours among others.
Crimson Wine Group (Tii:CWGL) is another publicly traded company that specializes in the wine business. I learned of them when they acquired one of my favorite Walla Walla Wineries, Seven Hills Winery, in 2016. They produce a number of premium wines and own premier brands such as Pine Ridge Vineyards, Seghesio Family Vineyards and Double Canyon among others. Crimson also offers stock perks to their shareholders in the form of 20% off discounts on wine purchases as well as access to VIP winery tours.
The last wine company I wanted to highlight is Treasury Wine Estates (Tii:TSRYY), an Australian-based company that owns some major brands of Australian and world wines. Treasury Wine Estates is most known for its signature Penfolds wine which is one of the most well known Australian wines. The company also owns several familiar names in American wines, such as Beaulieu Vineyard, Beringer Vineyards and Stags’ Leap Winery – a personal favorite from Napa Valley.
So, the next time you reach for a glass of your favorite wine, it may not just be a component of your cellar but your portfolio as well.