India's First Wine, Food and Hospitality Website, INDIAN WINE ACADEMY, Specialists in Food & Wine Programmes. Food Importers in Ten Cities Across India. Publishers of delWine, India’s First Wine.
Skip Navigation Links
About Us
Indian Market
Wine & Health
Wine Events
Retail News
Contact Us
Skip Navigation Links
Wine Tourism
Book Review
Photo Gallery
Readers' Comments
Video Wall
Media Partners
Ask Wineguyindia
Wine & Food
Wine Guru
Gerry Dawes
Harvest Reports
Mumbai Reports
Advertise With Us
US Report on Indian Market Released
Top Ten Importers List 2015-16
On Facebook
On Twitter
Delhi Wine Club
Corporatization of Grover Underway

Posted: Friday, 15 June 2012 17:08

Corporatization of Grover Underway

June 15 : After burning his hands by investing in the now financially troubled Indage Vintners, Anil Ambani is ready to take another plunge in the wine tanks by investing through the financial arm Reliance Capital in the newly formed alliance of two loss-making companies Grover and Zampa which have already been joined by the Singapore-based Ravi Viswanathan- if the report in the media is correct, writes Subhash Arora

According to a TOI report Anil Ambani Group company Reliance Capital has taken an 18% share in the newly merged company between Grover Vineyards and Valle de Vin which was joined by the Singapore-based wine investor Ravi Viswanathan, as a key stakeholder, in the combined entity, Grover Zampa Wines.

As written by delWine earlier as a Breaking News story, the Grover and Zampa deal had finally gone through despite several news stories in the press that the merger deal had fallen through. As also reported in these columns, the strategic part of the deal was the investment by the Singapore-based restaurateur and investor Ravi Viswanathan.

The news report also indicates that the name of the new entity has been decided and kept as Grover Zampa Wines Ltd. It would appear that the hint was well taken by the company after delWine wrote in the article following a chat with Kapil Grover, ‘The merged entity might be named Grover Zampa Vineyards Ltd. While Zampa would be well rid of the ludicrous name Valle de Vin, it does not make sense to name the entity ‘vineyards’ when both the existing companies buy a majority of grapes from outside. Hopefully, the new name would be Grover Zampa Wines Ltd. or simply Grover Zampa Ltd.’

The Grover family and the promoters of Valle de Vin- Deepak Roy, Ravi Jain and Neeraj Deorah—will together own a little over 50%, the rest being with  Ravi Viswanathan and Reliance Capital, says the report. Former Citi banker Jerry Rao and champagne house Veuve Clicquot had already sold their share when Brindco, the distribution partner was bought out by the new promoters. Michel Rolland who has been the consultant winemaker from the beginning has a negligible share but is considered ‘part of the family’ and continues to hold his stake in the merged entity.

Grover Vineyards, the second largest and also the oldest wine producer (the leading pioneer Indage Vintners is on the verge of bankruptcy), has been in troubled waters due to quality problems and has been stagnating at 60,000 cases while its younger rival Sula, which entered the industry in 1999, almost a decade after it was established, is already producing almost 6 times its volume and has been getting the capital infusion gradually as the needs arose. Four Seasons, a wine unit floated by Vijay Mallya  a few years ago only , has already been flirting with the 60,000 mark and should cross it in the current fiscal year.

The merger –with or without the entry of Reliance Capital - would make Grover Zampa a formidable rival to Sula Vineyards which dethroned Indage as it entered troubled waters 3-4 years ago and currently has an annual growth higher than the combined sales of Grover-Zampa as separate companies, both of which have been making losses.

A Reliance Capital spokesperson declined to comment. Kapil Grover (Grover) and  Ravi Jain (Zampa), both Directors in the new entity could not yet reply to an email enquiry sent to them from Italy as they are both travelling. Watch out these columns as the details of the deal get clearer.

One thing should be clear- the entry of Reliance Capital does not guaranty catapulting Grover-Zampa to heights where they can fly side-by-side with the leader Sula. Reliance’s  participation in Indage did not help its business operations or strategy as a wine company though the tripling of the share price manipulated smartly in the stock market might have got them dividends. General feeling in the industry has been that the shares were not sold when the price went astronomically high at around Rs. 900 a share- a 100-fold jump in a short period of 3 years. Today the company is on the verge of bankruptcy in which case all the money would have been lost.

Meanwhile, for Sula it may be just another working day but for the others it may yet prove the adage that to become a millionaire in the wine industry you have to be a billionaire-even though Sula has proved to be an exception and for Anil Ambani, the investment would literally be pocket change.

Subhash Arora
In Italy


Want to Comment ?
Please enter your comments in the space provided below. If there is a problem, please write directly to Thank you.

Generate a new image

Type letters from the image:

Please note that it may take some time to get your comment published...Editor

Wine In India, Indian Wine, International Wine, Asian Wine Academy, Beer, Champagne, World Wine Academy, World Wine, World Wines, Retail, Hotel


Copyright©indianwineacademy, 2003-2020 |All Rights Reserved
Developed & Designed by Sadilak SoftNet