Morton Estate vineyard bought by Lion
The vineyard associated with well-known wine label Morton Estate has been snapped up by Lion Beer, Spirits and Wines' New Zealand arm.
The deal has been given approval by the Overseas Investment Office to buy 41.25ha of land on Rapaura Rd in Marlborough for $6.775 million.
Reasons given for the permission included increased exports.
The vendor was Katikati-based company The Wine Portfolio, owned by Canadian John Coney.
Its marketing manager, Fiona MacDiarmid, said the Morton Estate brand had been sold to Lion last year but permission was needed to sell its Stone Creek vineyard as well.
"We've still got another vineyard in Marlborough," she said, and five more in Hawke's Bay.
Morton Estate was started in 1978 by kiwifruit grower Morton Brown. The label won early success and was bought by Coney in 1995 who then added a number of other wine labels including Mill Road and Nikau Point.
MacDiarmid said it sold Morton Estate to raise funds but was not looking at selling any other labels.
"We needed to raise funds to reinvest into the winery and the vineyards to take us to that next level, and Lion approached us with this offer and we accepted."