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July 2010
Family Succession Planning for Winery Owners in Uncertain Times
Lower profitability, lower valuation multiples and a relatively low tax rate for transfers of interests combine to create an ideal climate for succession planning.
by Thomas C. Berg, Jr., CFA, ASA, AVA and Fahm Saeteurn
Family wineries operating in the premium segment of the market have struggled in 2009, and they continue to do so in 2010. According to Gomberg, Fredrikson & Associates, the dollar value of U.S. retail wine wines declined 3.3 percent in 2009 after rising each year since 1991, and sales of higher-priced wines (those over $30 per bottle) declined at least 15 percent, according to Rabobank. As economic conditions worsened throughout 2009, customers traded down to lower price points, a trend whi...
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