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Halewood Wines & Spirits considers sale

Halewood Wines & Spirits has appointed financial advisory group Rothschild to explore “potential sale options” as the company grows internationally.

Halewood Wine & Spirits’ portfolio includes Whitley Neill Gin

The beverage group, based in Liverpool, UK, produces brands including Whitley Neill Gin, The Pogues Irish Whiskey and Rum Sixty Six.

Stewart Hainsworth, CEO, Halewood Wines & Spirits, said: “I can confirm that Rothschild has been appointed to explore strategic options for the shareholders of Halewood Wines & Spirits.

“This is an exciting time for the business, which our management team have been working towards for three years. We have refocused the business on artisanal spirits and craft beers, which has driven a significant upturn in profit.

“Our success has been driven by investment in equipment, acquisitions and marketing support and further fuelled by a high-growth brand portfolio, which includes Whitley Neill, currently the number one premium gin brand by volume in UK supermarkets. Whitley Neill’s success is being replicated internationally, as reported recently the brand has also broken into the US market.

“We are continually working towards delivering the best for our customers. Our investment in craft distilleries and breweries, including The City of London Distillery, Sadler’s Ales and Hawkshead Brewery, enables us to provide premium products with strong regional brands, in addition to offering consumer activation venues.

“Our discussions with Rothschild are a natural progression of the new strategy I brought to the business. We will be sharing further updates about this exciting journey in due course.”

Global ambition

Halewood Wines & Spirits has made no secret of its ambitious growth plans. In March 2017, the group secured a £50 million (US$61m) bank loan to support its acquisition strategy.

Later that same month, Halewood made a “strategic investment” in The City of London Distillery to provide its brands with new routes to market.

In May 2017, the company made its first foray into the premium mixer market with the launch its own tonic water range, Lamb & Watt.

Then in August, Halewood Wines & Spirits revealed proposals for a gin and malt whisky microdistillery in Edinburgh to bring the Crabbie brand back to the Scottish city.

In January this year, Halewood Wines & Spirits reported its net sales for the year ending 1 July 2017 had doubled and said it was planning further acquisitions.

By February, the group had added spiced rum brand Dead Man’s Fingers to its portfolio for an undisclosed fee.

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