In Australia, Treasury Wine Estates settled a shareholder class action for AUS$49 million after it was accused of misleading the market for its US business, and in the U.S., its plan to move a majority of its production from Sonoma to St. Helena lands in court. Michigan’s Atwater switches to M1 Network in Michigan to supply more midwestern states, and Indiana’s Sun King Brewery begins building a $5 million distillery. This is the news we’re thinking about here at SevenFifty Daily.

August 29, 2017
1. The Drinks Business

Treasury Wine Estates settles class action for AUS$49 million

Treasury had been accused of misleading the market and of breaching continuous disclosure obligations regarding a $160 million write-down of its US operation four years ago, which also saw the group destroy A$35 million of “old and aged commercial stock” in the US as a reaction to declining sales in this market. The lawsuit alleged that Treasury has misled its investors by releasing unrealistic profit guidance in late 2012 which resulted in a surplus of wine.

2. Wine business

Treasury Wine Estates' plans to boost premium wine production at its Beringer plant in St. Helena lands in court

Treasury Wine Estates Americas Co. plans to move all wine production from Sonoma County to St. Helena. A group named “Citizens for Responsible Winery Growth in St. Helena” alleges the city of St. Helena violated state environmental law and its own municipal code when it approved Beringer’s proposal to decommission eight large-size tanks and replace them with 130 smaller-size tanks. The plaintiffs want the city to conduct an environmental review of the plans under the California Environmental Quality Act before granting approval.

3. Brewbound

Atwater moves to M1 Network in Michigan, eyes midwestern realignment

Michigan’s Atwater Brewery realigned its distribution network in its home state, moving the brand from Imperial Beverage into the M1 Network of 10 MillerCoors wholesalers. The decision to transition the brand into the M1 Network was aimed at giving Atwater greater access to retail chain accounts and additional points of distribution, owner Mark Rieth said, and its broader strategy is to move the brand into four additional Midwestern states.

4. The Spirits Business

Indiana's Sun King Brewery begins building $5 million distillery

US-based Sun King Brewery has started work on a new a $5 million distillery in Carmel, Indiana, which will produce moonshine, rum, gin, and whiskey. The 15,000 square-foot distillery and tap room is scheduled to open in spring 2018 and will have the capacity to produce 10,000 gallons of alcohol a year through the firm’s new 250-gallon still.