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Family takes control of wine business

By Rashmi Kumar

The Madeira-based family-controlled holding company, the Blandy Group, has regained control of the Madeira Wine Company in a move designed to consolidate the family company’s operations after 200 years of continuous business.

Michael Blandy, sixth generation chairman of Blandy’s, told CampdenFB that the stake of majority shareholders in MWC – family-owned Symington Family Estates –will be reduced to a small percentage. He wasn’t prepared to elaborate; Symington previously owned 56% in the Madeira Wine Company.

Blandy said: “We want to maintain our strategic objective of meaningful presence in Madeira in terms of the wine business. We wanted to regain control of the Blandy trade name without any outside control.”

The Symington family acquired majority control of MWC in 1989 from the Blandy Group.

The Blandy Group was established in 1811 by John Blandy as a wine shipping company and currently operates within hotels, travel, shipping and media industry. The group is now in its seventh generation of management, with Christopher Blandy serving as chief executive of travel and shipping.