Decision number200710060
Application number200620158
Date29 May 2007
Offeror/applicantGussin (Robert Zalmon and Patricia Elizabeth) of United States of America
Ultimate applicant beneficial ownership100 percent - United States of America
Beneficial overseas ownership 
- Asset current0 percent
- Asset proposed100 percent
- Share currentN/A
- Share proposedN/A
Offeree(s)/seller(s)Villa Maria Estate Limited
100 percent - New Zealand, Fistonich (George Vijeceslav)
Business activitiesAgriculture - Horticulture & Fruit -Viticulture
Details of land involved10.4 hectares of freehold situated at Rapaura Road, Blenheim being CT 28301 (Marlborough Registry).
Regions involvedNelson/Marlborough
Total consideration$2,925,000
Consent soughtTo acquire an interest in land which, either alone or together with any associated land of that type, is or includes non-urban land and exceeds 5 hectares in area.

The application has been approved as it met the criteria.

The Overseas Investment Office is satisfied that the Applicants have business experience and acumen relevant to and are demonstrating financial commitment towards the investment. The Overseas Investment Office is further satisfied that the Applicants are of good character and not the kind of persons referred to in section 7(1) of the Immigration Act 1987.

The Applicants, Dr Robert and Dr Patricia Gussin, are existing vineyard owners in New Zealand and are existing suppliers to Villa Maria Estate Limited (Villa Maria) (the Vendor).

Outline of Proposed Development
The land is an established vineyard containing 9.09 planted hectares. It is proposed that the Applicants will enter into a Vineyard Management Agreement and Grape Supply Agreement with Villa Maria Estate Limited (Villa Maria) (the Vendor) which will enable the land to be continued to be managed by Villa Maria. Villa Maria intends to apply the capital released from the sale of the land to the Applicant towards the promotion and development of New Zealand wine sales overseas.

Rationale for Proposed Development
The Applicants propose to acquire the land from Villa Maria to further the Applicants interest in the New Zealand wine industry.

Our Assessment
The proposal is likely to result in the following benefits:

  1. the introduction of additional investment for development purposes;
  2. increased productivity in New Zealand; and
  3. the development of new export markets.
ContactPeter Radich
Radich Dwyer
P O Box 646