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Bronco Wine Company

Wine company based in Ceres in the San Joaquin Valley in California, one of the largest in the world. The artificial word "Bronco" was formed from "Brotherand Cousin", connected by "n" (from the "and"). The company is owned by Fred Franzia (*1944), who runs it as CEO, his brother Joseph and both cousins John Franzia. Fred's grandfather Guiseppe Franzia and his wife Teresa immigrated from Genoa, Italy in 1893 and acquired 80 acres of vineyards in the Central Valley. One of their daughters named Amalie married wine legend Ernest Gallo (1909-2007), who was therefore Fred Franzia's uncle.

Foundation of Franzia Brothers Winery

Wine was produced on a small scale until just before Prohibition. After prohibition was lifted, the five sons of the couple (including Fred's father Joe) founded the "Franzia Brothers Winery" in 1933. Three of the brothers sold their shares against the will of the other two in 1971 for a ridiculous sum of one million dollars each. The remaining two brothers, including Fred's father, then sold the winery in 1973 for 50 million dollars to the new majority owner Coca-Cola Bottling Company. This also included the right to use the Franzia name. In the course of a management buy-out of Coca Cola's wine activities, the company was merged into the Multi Wine Group in 1981.

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