Endeavour Drinks buys Chapel Hill and sets up Paragon Wine Estates

13 September, 2019 by Andy Young

Endeavour Drinks has revealed that it has bought McLaren Vale winery, Chapel Hill and that it will put the winery in its newly established Paragon Wine Estates portfolio.

As well as Chapel Hill, Paragon Wine Estates (PWE) will be home to Endeavour Drinks’ other premium regional wine brands including Krondorf (Barossa Valley), Isabel Estate (Marlborough) and Riddoch (Coonawarra).

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Managing Director of Endeavour Drinks, Steve Donohue said: “This development is an important step in further enhancing our wine business ahead of the proposed transition of Endeavour Drinks to a stand-alone business after the planned merger with ALH in 2020.

“Welcoming Chapel Hill to the group has inspired the creation of Paragon Wine Estates and is an exciting new element of our diverse Pinnacle Drinks business.

“These great wine producers deserve special attention. Each one has a rich history and unique traditions which form the basis of their wonderful stories. We hope to share those stories with wine lovers the world over.”

The purchase includes the Chapel Hill cellar door, together with associated buildings and 40 hectares under vine.

Longtime Chapel Hill Chief Winemaker and CEO Michael Fragos said: “Our team will remain with Chapel Hill and the winery’s important relationships with grape growers will also remain unchanged as a result of this acquisition.

“Over the past five years we have enjoyed a very close and successful working relationship with Endeavour Drinks. The team at Chapel Hill now enthusiastically look forward to working with the Endeavour team to continue to enhance the wonderful reputation and pedigree that Chapel Hill has garnered since it was established in 1971.”

In terms of establishing PWE, Donohue told the Australian Financial Review that Endeavour Drinks sees the move as an important step for the wine business ahead of its proposed merge with ALH and demerger from the Woolworths Group.

“We have a large number of brands but arguably none have as rich a history and as great opportunities as the four we are putting into Paragon,” Donohue told the AFR.

“We’re able to demonstrate to the industry the seriousness of our commitment and the extent to which we intend to participate in the production side.”