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Chinese luxury group buys Bordeaux vineyard

by Staff Writers
Bordeaux, France (AFP) March 1, 2011
The Chinese jewelry group Tesiro has bought a French family-owned wine chateau in the world-renowned Bordeaux region, industry officials told AFP on Tuesday.

Group managing director Shen Dongjun signed the final purchase agreement late Monday with the Ducos family, owners of the Chateau Laulan Ducos since 1911, according to the regional wine-growers' association.

The 41-year-old executive is a wine lover and keen to develop a market in his homeland for the chateau's 150,000-bottle annual output, which is sold under the Medoc appellation, Tesiro buy-out manager Linjun Zhou told AFP.

The former joint owner of the estate, 34-year-old Frederic Ducos, will stay on to work for the Chinese firm as a director and quality controller.

"The group sees this as a choice of quality. We're embarking on a course of bringing the wine up a level," he told AFP.

Tesiro has an annual turnouver of around 15 million euros (20 million dollars) and employs 3,000 people at 400 jewellers in southeast China.

Laulan Duclos is the fifth wine chateau in the Bordeaux region to have been bought by a Chinese firm, after Latour-Laguens in 2008, Richelieu in 2009, Chenu Lafitte in 2010 and De Viaud in 2011.

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