SOURCE: Vinum Capital Management

April 28, 2008 12:44 ET

Vinum Capital Management, LLC Launches Vinum Capital Partners I, LP, a Private Equity Fund Exclusively Targeting the Wine Industry

SAN ANSELMO, CA--(Marketwire - April 28, 2008) - Vinum Capital Management, LLC ("VCM") in San Anselmo, CA, has announced the formation of Vinum Capital Partners I, LP ("VCP"), a $250 million control and buyout private equity fund. VCP will be the leading equity capital fund focused solely on acquiring and operating mid-size premium and super-premium wine properties producing between 20,000 and 150,000 cases per annum.

The VCP team, who has exceptionally strong experience in winery operations, vineyard management, financial management, and M&A transactions, consists of:

--  Winery professionals whose experience encompasses brand management,
    sales, distribution, and winemaking at over 40 wineries encompassing over
    150 brands, including Mondavi, Gallo, Beringer, Ravenswood, and
    Schramsberg; and
--  Investment professionals who collectively have bought, sold, managed,
    or brokered over $1 billion in winery transactions.

"There is currently very little equity capital available in the middle market wine industry," said Stephen Kuhn, general manager and Managing Partner of VCM. "Our fund objective is to address the growing pent-up demand for equity capital in this sector of the market," Kuhn added, citing a recent study by Silicon Valley Bank and Scion Advisors indicating that over half of California's wineries will change ownership within 10 years.

Thomas Thornhill, Managing Partner of VCM, who is also Chairman of the Mendocino Wine Company and a former partner at Montgomery Securities, added, "The focus of this fund is to acquire wine properties efficiently, grow them effectively with expertise and necessary growth capital, and ultimately sell them to strategic and financial acquirers. We've built the best team in the wine, agriculture, and real estate industries to do just that."

VCM's Investment Partners include Justin Faggioli, formerly COO of Ravenswood; Scott Setrakian, formerly Director of Golden State Vineyards; and G. Craig Vachon, a financing and M&A expert. The fund's portfolio management team includes Bill Foster, formerly from Beringer; Jonathan Pey, formerly from Robert Mondavi and Fosters Wine Estates; Doug Rogers, formerly from Gallo, Southcorp, and Brown-Forman Wines; and Bob Steinhauer, formerly from Beringer and one of the leading viticultural experts in the world. Strategic Advisors include Don Brain with VinREIT and Global Wine Partners; and Tom Hakel, formerly with Stag's Leap Wine Cellars.

Vinum Capital Management, LLC, is an equity fund management company. Currently focused on its first fund, Vinum Capital Partners I, LP, the company makes control and buyout investments in wineries, wine properties, and strategically related businesses in California, Oregon and Washington. For more information, please contact Stephen Kuhn at 415-295-4650 or visit

Contact Information

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    Stephen Kuhn
    Vinum Capital Management, LLC
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