SONOMA -- The Franzia family, which operates Bronco Wine Co., brought in new management for 585 Wine Partners, a Sonoma-based producer of wines.
Bronco Chief Executive Officer Fred Franzia, a significant silent partner in 585 Wine Partners through a family entity called Barrel 10 Quarter Circle, in late February replaced co-founder and President Dan Leese and his wife, Kathy, with Dan Leonard as manager and Jim Carter as head of operations, according to a Bronco spokesman.
Mr. Leonard is vice president of Bronco, and longtime Sonoma resident Mr. Carter is director of exports for the company.
Family-owned Bronco is one of the world's largest wine companies, importing 50 brands and producing 40 brands, including the Charles Shaw brand, usually called "Two-Buck Chuck" for its $2-a-bottle price.
In 2004 Mr. Leese became head of Foster’s Wine Estates Americas. In December 2005, the Leeses and another Foster’s Americas executive, Doug Walker, and his wife, Becky, acquired the Red Truck brand from Cline Cellars and formed Axiom Wine Group. The company then became 585 Wine Partners.
Mr. Walker remains with the company.