Andrew Tan’s Emperador acquires Fundador - DON'T PUBLISH

Marianne V. Go - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Spain’s iconic brandy is now owned by a Filipino.

Andrew Tan remembers celebrating his graduation from college 42 years ago by drinking Fundador brandy.

Last Saturday, the Filipino taipan’s Emperador Inc. sealed in Madrid a P13.8-billion (275 million euro) “all-cash” deal with Beam Suntory in Spain to acquire the Fundador brand, along with three other international liquor brands.

Grupo Emperador Spain S.A., a company owned by Tan’s Emperador Inc., signed an agreement on Nov. 28 with Beam Suntory to acquire the company’s Spanish brandy and sherry business in Jerez, Spain.   

The acquisition includes the iconic brands Fundador Pedro Domecq, Terry Centenario, Tres Cepas and Harveys. The four brands carry a unique heritage and market leadership position in their respective categories. 

Fundador Brandy is the largest and oldest brandy in Spain and has been an icon of Spanish culture and heritage. It has also been an iconic premium liquor brand in the Philippines for more than 150 years. 

Terry Centenario is Spain’s no. 1 selling brandy, while Tres Cepas is Equatorial Guinea’s no. 1 brandy. 

Harveys, on the other hand, is the United Kingdom’s no. 1 selling sherry wine.  

The assets acquired by Emperador include Bodegas Fundador, known to be Spain’s largest and oldest brandy cellars established in 1730, as well as production facilities, ageing cellars, vineyards and state-of-the-art blending and bottling facilities in Jerez.

Other assets include a brandy distillery in Tomelloso, Spain with sufficient ageing inventory of brandy and sherry, which Emperador officials believe will drive the company’s future growth.

Tan currently owns more than 1,000 hectares of vineyards in Spain. With the acquisition of Fundador and the three other brands, Tan can easily more than double his vineyard ownership in Spain.

After sealing the deal, and in an address to Fundador employees in Jerez, Tan revealed that acquiring the Fundador branch has a “sentimental value” for him as it was the brandy he and his family drank when he graduated from college 42 years ago. 

The acquisition further strengthens Emperador’s dominant position as the number one brandy company in the Philippines and in the world. It also makes the Philippines one of the biggest foreign investors in Spain.

According to Philippine Ambassador to Spain Carlos Salinas, “We are very happy that this particular event has taken place  because it makes a mark that the Philippines is looking more and more into Spain for possible investments.”

He added, “As a matter of fact, the Philippines is now one of the largest investors in Spain and we welcome this as now we are able to make a mark. We are able to make a stronger presence. We are able to be in the radar of the global investment arena.” 

According to Emperador president Winston Co, “The acquisition of the Spanish assets and Fundador Brandy is immediately accretive both to Emperador’s revenue and net income. With the combined global reach of Whyte & Mackay and Fundador, our expanded product portfolio will have access to more than 100 countries around the world. In our pipeline are several proudly Philippine-made products that we intend to introduce to the international markets starting next year.”

Emperador hired Nomura as its sole financial advisor, and Allen & Overy as its legal advisor for this transaction. 

Emperador is the liquor unit of Tan’s Alliance Global Group Inc., which is the world’s largest brandy company. Last year, Emperador acquired Whyte and Mackay Ltd., the world’s 5th largest Scotch whiskey company.

Among Whyte and Mackay’s prestigious brands are The Dalmore and Jura Single Malt Scotch whiskies, Whyte & Mackay and John Barr Blended Scotch whiskies and Vladivar Vodka.


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