Foster's to quit unprofitable US wine operations

on 13/10/10 at 3:42 pm

Industry

FOSTER’S is prepared to pull out of unprofitable parts of the United States wine market as it restructures its portfolio to focus on higher-priced wines before the demerger from the beer division next year.

David Dearie, the Australia and New Zealand boss of Foster’s Treasury Wine Estates operations, said the future of the company, especially with the high Australian dollar, was in moving its brands into higher price brackets, or ”premiumisation”.

”We have to get the premiumisation in some of these international markets really working because that’s where the future is going to be, that’s where we see the future, that’s where we see the opportunities,” Mr Dearie said.

Within the US, premium wines are typically priced above $US10 or $US12 a bottle, he said.

”If you have got bigger margins … at higher prices then you have got a bit more flexibility, but there is no disputing the fact that the strong currency right now is an interesting position for us all.”

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