Strategic Transaction Creates More Targeted Portfolio and Reduces
TORONTO, Sept. 27, 2011 /CNW/ - Corby Distilleries Limited ("Corby" or
the "Company") (TSX:CDL.A, TSX:CDL.B) announced today that it has
entered into an agreement to sell certain owned-brands as well as the
shares of its subsidiary that owns the manufacturing and bottling
facility in Montréal, Québec, to Sazerac Company, Inc. ("Sazerac") for
a purchase price of $32.9 million, plus the value of inventory on hand
at closing. The transaction is expected to close on October 31, 2011.
Ernst & Young Orenda Corporate Finance Inc. acted as the Company's
exclusive financial advisor in the transaction.
The transaction involves the sale of 17 brands, including De Kuyper
Geneva gin, De Kuyper Peachtree schnapps, Red Tassel vodka and Silk
Tassel Canadian whisky, as well as the Montréal-based manufacturing
facility where a significant portion of the brands are produced. On
closing, all employees of the facility will be employed by Sazerac, and
a number of Corby-owned brands will continue to be blended, bottled and
warehoused in the facility through a contract manufacturing agreement
entered into with Sazerac.
"We are very pleased to have reached an agreement on this strategic
divestiture," commented Patrick O'Driscoll, Corby President & Chief
Executive Officer. "We had some brand overlap in certain spirit
categories and this transaction helps us streamline our portfolio with
a more focused and targeted collection of brands, as part of our brand
prioritization strategy. It also frees up more of our resources to
create growth opportunities for our priority brands including Wiser's
Canadian whisky, Lamb's rum, Polar Ice vodka and McGuinness liqueurs;
resulting in increased shareholder value."
"Canada has become an important market for Sazerac over the past decade
and we are delighted to be able to further increase our presence in the
market. We are particularly pleased at the prospect of being able to
develop the De Kuyper brand in Canada," added Mark Brown, Sazerac
President and Chief Executive Officer.
The large majority of Corby's remaining brands will continue to be
manufactured in the Hiram Walker & Sons Limited facility located near
Windsor, Ontario, which is managed by Corby on behalf of Pernod Ricard
"Corby is committed to a strategy of value growth and a focused brand
portfolio that positions us for long-term growth in key categories with
premium spirits and wines," added Mr. O'Driscoll. "This divestiture is
an important step in moving that strategy forward."
Separately, Corby also announced that Frederic Villain is not standing
for re-election to the Board of Directors (the "Board") and that John
Leburn was nominated for election to the Board at the annual general
meeting of shareholders to be held on November 9, 2011. Thierry
Pourchet will become Chief Financial Officer of Pernod Ricard Americas
on November 9, 2011 and will remain on the Board as Pernod Ricard
S.A.'s nominee. Mr. Leburn will replace Mr. Pourchet as Corby
Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer on the same date.
Corby's portfolio of owned-brands includes some of the most renowned
brands in Canada, including Wiser's Canadian whisky, Lamb's rum, Polar
Ice vodka and McGuinness liqueurs. Through its affiliation with Pernod
Ricard S.A., Corby also represents leading international brands such as
ABSOLUT vodka, Chivas Regal, The Glenlivet and Ballantine's Scotch
whiskies, Jameson Irish whiskey, Beefeater gin, Malibu rum, Kahlúa
liqueur, Mumm champagne, and Jacob's Creek, Wyndham Estate and
Graffigna wines. The existing Voting Class A Common Shares and
Non-voting Class B Common Shares of the Company are traded on the
Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols CDL.A and CDL.B, respectively.
Following its establishment in 1850, Sazerac has distilled an
ever-increasing line of fine spirits. Sazerac is an independent,
American family-owned company and the proud owner of many of America's
most venerable distilling companies: Buffalo Trace Distillery, A. Smith
Bowman, Glenmore Distillery, Barton, Fleischmann, Medley and Mr.
This press release contains forward-looking statements, including
statements concerning possible or assumed future results of Corby's
operations. Forward-looking statements typically are preceded by,
followed by or include the words "believes", "expects", "anticipates",
"estimates", "intends", "plans" or similar expressions. Forward-looking
statements are not guarantees of future performance. They involve
risks, uncertainties and assumptions and, as such, the Company's
results could differ materially from those anticipated in these
forward-looking statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue
reliance on forward-looking statements.
SOURCE Corby Distilleries Limited
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