🇨🇭🇫🇮 Coca-Cola HBC further strengthens its 24/7 beverage partner strategy by acquiring Finlandia vodka from Brown-Forman

June 19, 2023
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Press release from Coca-Cola HBC

linkedin_finlandiaCoca-Cola HBC AG (“Coca-Cola HBC“) is pleased to announce that it has reached an agreement to acquire Brown-Forman Finland Oy (“Company“), owner of the Finlandia vodka brand (“Finlandia”), from Brown-Forman Corporation’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Brown-Forman Netherlands BV. The agreed purchase price amounts to US$220 million and is subject to customary closing price adjustments (the “Proposed Transaction“).  The acquisition is being made through Coca-Cola HBC’s wholly-owned subsidiary, CC Beverages Holdings II BV. Completion of the Proposed Transaction is expected in the second half of 2023 and is subject to regulatory approvals.

Finlandia was established in 1970 and is a leading vodka brand in Central and Eastern Europe with annual volumes of 2.7 million 9L cases globally, of which more than 60% is being generated within Coca-Cola HBC’s geographic footprint. Finlandia is bottled by Anora Group plc in Finland based on a long-term production services agreement and is available in pure and in several flavored versions.

The Proposed Transaction represents a unique opportunity for Coca-Cola HBC that enhances its journey towards becoming the leading 24/7 beverage partner. Coca-Cola HBC has been distributing Finlandia and other premium spirits brands for more than 17 years and this acquisition will further enrich and strengthen its portfolio across more of its markets. Ownership of the Finlandia brand will enhance Coca-Cola HBC’s premium spirits credentials; driving mixability opportunities with premium and super-premium Non-Alcoholic Ready-To-Drink (NARTD) products, helping capture more drinking occasions, and strengthening partnerships with customers in strategically important channels such as HoReCa.

“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. The proven complementarity of our premium spirits business with our strong NARTD portfolio enables us to offer solutions for a broad range of 24/7 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.”

ZORAN BOGDANOVIC, CEO, COCA-COLA HBC

We are pleased to pass on the ownership torch of Finlandia to Coca-Cola HBC, who has proven to be a strong and reliable partner to our brands for more than 17 years. We believe Coca-Cola HBC is well-suited to support Finlandia’s future stages of development. I am confident that Coca-Cola HBC’s growth ambitions and capabilities in premium spirits, its critical mass and executional excellence, coupled with its leading sales and distribution credentials in the markets where it operates, will accelerate Finlandia’s growth trajectory.

LAWSON WHITING, CEO, BROWN-FORMAN


About Coca-Cola HBC

Coca-Cola HBC is a growth-focused consumer packaged goods business and strategic bottling partner of The Coca-Cola Company. We create value for all our stakeholders by supporting the socio-economic development of the communities in which we operate and we believe building a more positive environmental impact is integral to our future growth. Together, we and our customers serve 740 million consumers across a broad geographic footprint of 29 countries on three continents. Our portfolio is one of the strongest, broadest and most flexible in the beverage industry, offering consumer-leading beverage brands in the sparkling, juice, water, sport, energy, plant-based, ready-to-drink tea, coffee, adult sparkling and premium spirits categories. These beverages include Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola Zero, Schweppes, Kinley, Costa, Valser, Romerquelle, Fanta, Sprite, Powerade, Aquarius, Vitamin Water, FuzeTea, Cappy, Monster, Burn, Caffè Vergnano and Adez. We foster an open and inclusive work environment amongst our 33,000 employees and we are ranked among the top sustainability performers in ESG benchmarks such as the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices, CDP, MSCI ESG and FTSE4Good.

Coca-Cola HBC has a premium listing on the London Stock Exchange (LSE:CCH) and is listed on the Athens Exchange (ATHEX:EEE). For more information, please visit https://www.coca-colahellenic.com.

About Brown‑Forman

For more than 150 years, Brown-Forman Corporation has enriched the experience of life by responsibly building fine quality beverage alcohol brands, including Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, Jack Daniel’s Ready-to-Drinks, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Fire, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Apple, Gentleman Jack, Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel, Woodford Reserve, Old Forester, Coopers’ Craft, The GlenDronach, Benriach, Glenglassaugh, Slane, Herradura, el Jimador, New Mix, Korbel, Sonoma-Cutrer, Finlandia, Chambord, Fords Gin, Gin Mare, and Diplomático Rum. Brown-Forman’s brands are supported by approximately 5,600 employees globally and sold in more than 170 countries worldwide. For more information about the company, please visit brown-forman.com. Follow us on LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.


Originally published on 19 June. 

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