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Rapaura Vintners changes shareholding

July 11, 2005

Marlborough’s Rapaura Vintners changes shareholding

Marlborough’s Rapaura Vintners’ shareholders, Babich Wines, Goldwater Estate and Matua Valley Wines, have consolidated their shareholding in the company and now hold one third of the shares each, the company said today.

The recent expansion of their operation to an 8000 tonne state-of-the-art winery is in response to the growth in winemaking, bottling and storage demands from its shareholders and many other contract clients.

Rapaura is one of Marlborough's largest wineries making fine Marlborough wines for Babich Wines, Goldwater Estate and Matua Valley Wines as well as winemaking under contract for other well known Marlborough labels.

Negociants (New Zealand) Ltd, the owner of Nautilus Estate, has sold its shares with immediate effect as they move to realise their long-held int
ntion to develop their own winery in Marlborough.

Nautilus, a foundation shareholder, will continue its close association with Rapaura Vintners as a significant bottling client as well as utilising other contract services. ``The additional winemaking capacity resulting from this latest move will be fully utilised in the 2006 vintage and has been factored into expansion plans for some years now,’’ Rapaura’s chief executive Nigel Taylor said today.

``Since the move to the new winery in 2003, the company has grown significantly, outstripping its first five-year development plan by the end of 2004. We are now planning the next phase of growth so as to match our level of services to our clients’ growing requirements,’’ Mr Taylor said.

Rapaura was established in 1995 and was the first contract winery established in New Zealand offering a full range of winemaking, bottling and warehousing services. They have completed a comprehensive re-development of the former Stoneleigh Winery in Jacksons Road, in the heart of Marlborough winemaking.

ENDS

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