Vintage Wine Estates Threatened With Insolvency

The US wine group Vintage Wine Estates (VWE) recently published its quarterly figures; they paint a worrying picture for the company.

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Insolvency looming? (Photo: psdesign1/Fotolia)
Insolvency looming? (Photo: psdesign1/Fotolia)

A debt-to-equity ratio of more than 410% contrasts with ever-decreasing sales. Turnover in the three months to the end of March - the third quarter of VWE's financial year - slumped by almost 30% to US$ 45.7m, while turnover for the year to date has fallen by 15% to US$ 186.9m.

In the statement accompanying the quarterly figures, VWE paints a gloomy picture of the future: "“Our management has identified that there is a substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern," it says. “We may not be able to repay, refinance or restructure our substantial indebtedness owed to our lenders, which would have a material adverse effect on our financial condition and may cause us to seek bankruptcy protection.”

VWE includes brands such as Bar Dog, B.R. Cohn, Cameron Hughes, Cherry Pie, Firesteed and Clos Pegas. The company has been in difficulties for some time, and all measures, such as handing over the management to Seth Kaufman, previously North American CEO of Moët-Hennessy, have not yet been successful. MS

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