Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company (HBC) has reached an agreement to acquire the Finlandia vodka brand from Brown-Forman for $220 million.
The deal was made through Coca-Cola HBC’s subsidiary, CC Beverages Holdings II.
Founded in 1970, Finlandia is a prominent vodka brand in Europe, with a global distribution of 2.7 million nine-litre cases annually.
Coca-Cola HBC said that more than 60% of the vodka’s sales are generated within its geographic footprint. The brand is available in pure form (distilled alcohol with water) and in several flavoured versions.
Prior to the acquisition, Coca-Cola HBC has been distributing Finlandia for over 17 years. The deal is said to bolster Coca-Cola HBC’s reputation in the premium spirits market, creating new opportunities for premium and super-premium non-alcoholic ready-to-drink (NARTD) products and strengthening partnerships with customers in strategically key channels, such as hotel, restaurant and catering.
Zoran Bogdanovic, CEO of Coca-Cola HBC, said: “Having been associated with the distribution of Finlandia for 17 years in several markets, we are excited by this unique and regionally relevant opportunity that will support the acceleration of our on-premise business across more of our markets”.
He continued: “The proven complementarity of our premium spirits business with our strong NARTD portfolio enables us to offer solutions for a broad range of 24/seven consumption occasions, particularly socialising moments. We view this as an attractive investment and a natural evolution of our role as one of Finlandia’s distribution partners, further attesting to the strength of our time-tested and wide-ranging partnership with Brown-Forman. We appreciate the trust placed in us and look forward to creating more value for our partners and customers by capturing new opportunities with our well-rounded beverage portfolio.”
Finlandia is bottled by Anora Group under a long-term production services agreement.
Completion of the transaction is expected in the second half of 2023 and is subject to regulatory approvals.
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