Arcus acquires Swedish Vingruppen


Norway's largest wine and spirits supplier, Arcus, is acquiring 60% of the Swedish company Vingruppen. Following this acquisition, Arcus Gruppen's annual sales will amount to SEK 1.6 billion. The group's market share in Sweden will rise to approximately 5%.
Vingruppen complements Arcus with a broad range of wines from all over the world, from attractively priced high-volume wines to exclusive wines and Champagne. The group's position in the Nordic wine market will be further strengthened.
-    Arcus CEO Jan Tore Føsund comments: "The acquisition of Vingruppen is an important step in our Nordic strategy and will help to further expand our focus on wine."
Vingruppen includes VinUnic, Bonarome Wineworld and Vinovum as well as the minority owned company VinUnic Finland. The product range includes the brands Foot of Africa, Cline, Andre Clouet, Ricasoli, Catena, Brumont, Guigal and Louis Roederer.
-    "We are looking forward to being part of Arcus Gruppen," say CEO Claes Lindkvist and Deputy CEO Stefan Stjärnström. "This co-operation will enable us to enter the Norwegian Market. Arcus's financial strengthen will help us to realise our aim of continued growth in Sweden and the other Nordic countries."
Vingruppen's companies will continue to operate independently in the Swedish, Finnish and Estonian markets and no organisational changes will be made. CEO Claes Lindkvist and Deputy CEO Stefan Stjärnström will remain with the company. The company's present owners, Claes Lindkvist, Stefan Stjärnström and Mats Heiman will retain a 40% stake in Vingruppen.
Arcus, which is a subsidiary of Ratos, is Norway's largest wine and spirits supplier. The group's best-known brands include Braastad Cognac, Vikingfjord Vodka, Løiten and Linie Aquavit. 2005 sales totalled SEK 1,314 million and EBITA reached SEK 60 million.
Vingruppen i Norden AB is one of Sweden's largest wine suppliers and had sales of SEK 308 million in 2005. VinUnic AB was chosen as wine importer of the year in 2004 and 2005 by Sweden's leading wine journalists from the Allt om Vin magazine. In the same competition in 2005, Bonarome Wineworld's supplier Barone Ricasoli won the title for both red wine of the year and wine producer of the year.
For further information, please contact:
Jan Tore Føsund, CEO Arcus, +47 22 97 55 00
Claes Lindkvist, CEO Vingruppen i Norden AB, +46 705 85 18 67
Anna-Karin Celsing, Head of Corporate Communications Ratos, +46 8 700 17 77