Regarding wine investments, 2011 was marked by two stages: the first one with signs of good prospects for the business, and the second one of caution. Different from other years, when the main investments were made in vineyards and grape production, this year, they were intended for the expansion of wineries’ capacity. See below some of the major investments made in 2011.
Casa Bianchi: invested over ARS 35 million to expand its capacity by 50% and reach an annual wine production of 15 million liters. The investment plan included the building of a bottling plant with a surface of 1,360m2 (14,639 ft2), 2 industrial premises (fermentation) covering a total area of 2.700m2 (29,063 ft2) and warehouses with 2,000 m2 (21,528 ft2) (for supplies and finished products). Moreover, the company acquired a new bottling line and 82 stainless steel tanks with a capacity of 5 million liters.
Cepas Argentinas: in 2010, the company purchased Viniterra and during 2011, Casa Orfila. This last acquisition allowed the winery to double the sales volume of alcoholic drinks, going from 6 million cases per year to 12 million cases with a growth of its exports. This way, the firm starts to operate in new sales and distribution channels.
Rutini Wines: although the outlay was gradual and made in stages, the construction of the winery is almost completed regarding its industrial stage. It is anticipated a heavy investment of around USD 5 million in developing tourism. Thus, the total outlay would amount to USD 18 million.
Peñaflor: since 2011, the winery is carrying out an investment plan intended for equipment and extension of facilities in Mendoza’s wineries as well as Cafayate’s, which will continue during 2012. Besides, a plantation plan was completed with almost 180 hectares of new vineyards spread throughout Cafayate, Pedernal and 40 hectares in Altamira. Last week, El Cronista announced that the company run by the Bemberg family purchased 100% of Bodegas La Rosa SA’s shares, in control of the group since 1999 (though 44% of it was still owned by Rodolfo Lávaque, owner of Finca Quara, Suter and Lávaque winery in Mendoza, among other firms).
Nieto Senetiner: Molinos made a USD 12 million outlay, mainly intended for expanding by 25% its winemaking capacity, meaning a 100% expansion from the winery acquisition by the Perez Companc family in 1998.
Catena Zapata: among other investments, the winery extended a warehouse for finished products and built another one of 2,500 m2 (26,910 ft2) to store supplies. Moreover, it bought bottling equipments, increased its cooling capacity and carried out a plantation plan of vineyards across 150 more hectares.