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Diamond Estates and The Kirkwood Group merge Agency operations to form Kirkwood Diamond Canada

Press Release


Diamond Estates and The Kirkwood Group merge Agency operations to form Kirkwood Diamond Canada
Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario– September 8, 2014

Diamond Estates Wines and Spirits Inc. (TSXV: DWS) and The Kirkwood Group Ltd. are pleased to announce the merger of their respective agency businesses into a partnership named “Kirkwood Diamond Canada.” The merger brings together two of Canada’s leading beverage alcohol companies to form a single operating entity of superior scale and diversification. A combined sales force of complementary strengths will distribute an augmented portfolio of international wine, spirits and beer brands across Canada. The merger is expected to conclude on October 1st, 2014.

Diamond Estates will consolidate the partnership’s financial results into its quarterly and annual results.
The Kirkwood Group is a privately held company specializing in the marketing, sales and distribution of leading beverage alcohol brands within the Canadian market. They are based in Oakville Ontario with sales representation in all markets of the country.

Diamond Estates Wines and Spirits is one of Canada’s leading domestic producers of VQA wines and an importer and distributor of beverage alcohol brands from around the world. The organization has offices in Niagara-on-the-Lake and Toronto.

“This merged organization will combine the best features of two great companies and will create one of the largest marketing and sales organizations in Canada” stated Gord Haist, Chief Operating Officer of The Kirkwood Group. “Our partnership will represent many of the leading beverage alcohol brands in Canada and with our expanded and deepened sales coverage we will be able to significantly grow our suppliers’ businesses.”
“This partnership will effectively double the size of our individual businesses which will allow us to combine efficiencies in distribution and administration with the goal of significantly improving profitability and the size and scope of our operation” stated Murray Souter, CEO of Diamond Estates Wines and Spirits. “An organization of this size gives us the ability to invest in our suppliers’ business helping them achieve accelerated growth and better results within the Canadian market.”

Kirkwood Diamond Canada will be headquartered in Oakville Ontario and the Diamond Estates Winery will continue to operate independently of the partnership and will be headquartered in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

About Diamond:
Diamond Estates Wines and Spirits Inc. is a producer, marketer and distributor of wines, spirits, cider and beer in Canada. The company operates two wineries in the Niagara region of Ontario producing VQA and blended wines under such well-known brand names as 20 Bees, EastDell, Lakeview Cellars, Dois Amigos, Hat Trick, Dan Aykroyd, Benchmark, Riders Valley and Seasons. The company also proudly represents and imports several fine wines and spirits from around the world and serves as the marketing and sales agent for these brands in all regions of the country with a dedicated sales force. For further information on the company, please visit the company’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com.

About The Kirkwood Group

The Kirkwood Group is a national sales and marketing agency representing producers of premium and prestige wines, spirits, beers and refreshment beverages. A Canadian, family-owned business, they are dedicated to building strong relationships and effectively communicating their suppliers’ brand messages with passion and care, a vision instilled within the organization by agency founder and industry icon, the late Brian Kirkwood. Formed and incorporated in 1998, the company is headquartered in Oakville, Ontario.
For further information about Diamond Estates, please contact:

J. Murray Souter
President & CEO
jmurraysouter@diamondwines.com
905 641 1042 Ext 234

For further information about The Kirkwood Group, please contact:

Gord Haist
Chief Operating Officer
ghaist@thekirkwoodgroup.com
905 849-4346 ext22

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Forward Looking Statement
This press release contains forward-looking statements. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as “plans”, “expects” or “does not expect”, “is expected”, “estimates”, “intends”, “anticipates” or “does not anticipate”, or “believes”, or variations of such words and phrases or state that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might” or “will” be taken, occur or be achieved. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Diamond Estates Wines and Spirits Inc., the Kirkwood Group, or the proposed partnership’s (the “parties”) to be materially different from any future results, performance or  achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Actual results and developments are likely to differ, and may differ materially, from those expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements contained in this press release. Such forward-looking statements are based on a number of assumptions which may prove to be incorrect, including, but not limited to: the ability of the parties to complete the transaction; the economy generally; consumer interest in the services and products of the joint venture; financing; competition; and anticipated and unanticipated costs. While the parties acknowledge that subsequent events and developments may cause its views to change, the parties specifically disclaim any obligation to update these forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the views of either party as of any date subsequent to the date of this press release. Although the parties have attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Closing of the transaction remains subject to the final approval of the TSX Venture Exchange.

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