Halewood buys stake in Rum Sixty Six parentBy Amy Hopkins
UK drinks group Halewood Wines & Spirits has acquired a stake in the parent company of Rum Sixty Six through its new craft spirits joint venture.
Halewood has announced that it now owns a “significant stake” in the Bajan Trading Company through the JV, called HJ Neill Ltd, at the same time confirming that it has agreed import and distribution rights of Barbados-made Rum Sixty Six.
Bajan Trading Company has a family connection to the Seale family, with Richard Seale currently acting as master distiller of Rum Sixty Six at the Foursquare Rum Distillery in St Philip, Barbados.
“Rum Sixty Six offers a fantastic platform for Halewood to invest at the premium end of the rum category,” said Stewart Hainsworth, CEO of Halewood Wines & Spirits. “In addition to a compelling brand story, Foursquare has the capabilities to create liquids which are unrivalled amongst golden rums.”
Earlier this year, Hainsworth told The Spirits Business that his company was “actively looking at” rum brands as potential acquisitions.
Halewood now plans to grow the Rum Sixty Six offering, adding a six-year-old and a cask strength 12-year-old to the portfolio in 2017. Currently, the Rum Sixty Six ‘Family Reserve’ 12-year-old is distilled in small batches and aged in ex-Bourbon American white oak casks.
“This partnership is a perfect match,” said Stephen Wallace, chairman of the Bajan Trading Company. “We bring unique access to some of the best aged rums in the world, and Halewood brings high level professional support and a significant distribution network that we need to grow the brand together.”
Earlier this year, Halewood bought a stake in Irish whiskey producer West Cork Distillers, having previously acquired a 50% stake in The Pogues Irish Whiskey, produced in collaboration between the eponymous band and West Cork.