Calabria Family Wines’ purchase of McWilliam’s Wines is now complete, marking an exciting new chapter for one of Australia’s most iconic wine companies.
It follows a tumultuous 15 months for McWilliam’s, which went into voluntary administration in January 2020 after being in operation for more than 141 years across six generations of family ownership.
In July, creditors owed $40 million voted overwhelmingly in favour of a buyout by Prcstnt. However, Prcstnt failed to provide the cash to close the deal and the winemaker went back on the market in December.
Real estate agents from Colliers International were reappointed to sell the business and assets of McWilliam’s Wines Group as a going concern or separately. However, Calabria stepped in to save the business from being broken up.
“Both of our families have a rich heritage, contributing much to the Australian wine industry and the Riverina wine region,” said Managing Director Bill Calabria.
“While the recent acquisition closes a difficult period for the McWilliam family, I speak for everyone in the Calabria family that we aim to respect their many contributions to the growth of Australian wine and champion the unique attributes that
have made the McWilliam’s name celebrated around the world.
“Since our own founding 75 years ago, the supportive relationships with our Riverina neighbours have always been an important part of our journey, not least with the McWilliam family.
“The McWilliam’s were instrumental in helping my father, Francesco Calabria, in establishing our vineyard and winery. I know that it’s in this spirit that Frank, Michael, Andrew and Elizabeth are proud and honoured to be working with Scott McWilliam and the rest of the family to bring both of our businesses together in the best way possible.
“Over the next four weeks, our focus will be to integrate each McWilliam’s Wines business department into our own – from production and sales to marketing and operations. We aim to align all systems to work together, while both brands maintain their unique identities.
“Our ultimate goal is to ensure we are both on a path to prosperity. Combined, McWilliam’s and Calabria have over two centuries of winemaking experience and excellence – and it’s our goal to give the utmost respect to that. While these businesses will continue to operate as two entities, both families will work together – stronger as one.
“We will update you with any further developments as they occur, but for now, we wanted to share our excitement as the Calabria and McWilliam family enter a new era in our Australian wine journey.”
All distribution enquiries for McWiliam’s Wines will now be handled directly through Calabria Family Wines. For any requests, contact customer service at 1800 800 584.
Pictured main: Andrew Calabria and Scott McWilliam.