Russian champagne producer Igristiye Vina and its co-investors are planning to acquire a 70% stake in Italian wine producer Contarini for about €8m by the end of this year.

Contarini will use the funds generated by the sale to repay part of its €20m debts. It supplied about half a million bottles of wine to Russia in 2012.

With this acquisition, Igristiye Vina is planning to enhance its annual wine supplying capacity to between 1 and 1.5 million bottles, reported the Moscow Times citing Igristiye Vina owner Vasily Dragan.

Contarini’s financial constraints date back to the 2008 economic crisis, which forced many European wine producers to sell their assets.

The deal will be finalized by an Italian court in December but Igristiye Vina is already managing Contarini, Dragan said, refusing to confirm the price of the deal.

The purchase is not the first instance of Russian businessmen developing a taste for Italian wine makers.

Over the past years, Russian Standard has acquired a 94.1% stake in Italian vermouth producer Gancia, which had a debt load of €30m, for €113m.