LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville-based Copper & Kings American Brandy Co. announced the sale of a minority equity stake to Constellation Brands, a leading international producer of beer, wine and spirits.
The collaboration brings together one of America’s most adventurous and innovative craft distillers with America’s most dynamic total beverage alcohol (TBA) company.
“In all honesty there could not be a better fit between a small craft distiller and a leader in the beverage alcohol industry like Constellation Brands,” said Copper & Kings Founder and CEO Joe Heron. “There are not only significant synergies in supply chain, but also a shared culture of entrepreneurship, and most importantly an overlapping culture of innovation and social responsibility. There’s great personal chemistry, excellent complementary product portfolios. And a mutual love of rock & roll.
“We are operating in an increasingly dynamic and changing business environment; distributor consolidation, retailers are embracing smaller, innovative craft spirits and consumers are becoming more adventurous and discerning drinkers. We’ve done a lot of hard yards to get to where we are, and we are proud of that, but we now feel the need for some assistance with the heavy lifting required to build a legacy market leader brand and investigate global expansion.”
“We are going to need additional gas in the tank to keep up with the growth we are now encountering as a brand, and for the brandy category in general. Brown spirits have a very long-term planning horizon; 10 years or more out. Constellation’s investment will help us move forward with appropriate capital. We are also incredibly excited to be part of a family of brands that includes High West, Casa Noble, Robert Mondavi, Meiomi, The Prisoner, Kung Fu Girl, Kim Crawford, Corona, Modelo, Ballast Point – well I could go on and on… We feel immense pride to be even mentioned within that pantheon,” said Heron.
“Copper & Kings has a fiercely independent streak,” said Constellation Brands’ Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Bill Newlands. “Their entrepreneurship and focus on premium high-end craft spirits aligns closely with our strategy of delivering what the consumer wants. Copper & Kings is scalable not only in equity, but also the inventory of aged and aging spirits on hand. We see our role as adding fuel to their fire. And we think it’s going to burn very bright.”
About Copper & Kings American Brandy Co.
Copper & Kings uses small batch copper pot-distillation to forge untraditional, non-derivative, pure pot-distilled American apple and grape brandies, absinthe, gin and Destillaré liqueurs that are non-chill filtered with no added colors, flavors or synthetic chemicals. The state-of-the-art distillery exclusively focuses on the distillation of brandy and spirits using a brandy base. Copper & Kings, located at 1121 E. Washington St. in Butchertown, is owned by beverage entrepreneurs Joe and Lesley Heron. Products are currently available in 31 markets across the USA. For more information, visit www.copperandkings.com or follow @CopperAndKings on Facebook and Twitter.
About Constellation Brands
Constellation Brands (NYSE: STZ and STZ.B), a Fortune 500 company, is a leading international producer and marketer of beer, wine and spirits with operations in the U.S., Mexico, New Zealand, Italy and Canada. Constellation is the No. 3 beer company in the U.S. with high-end, iconic imported brands such as Corona Extra, Corona Light, Modelo Especial, Modelo Negra and Pacifico. The company’s beer portfolio also includes Ballast Point, one of the most awarded craft brewers in the U.S. In addition, Constellation is the world leader in premium wine, selling great brands that people love, including Robert Mondavi, Clos du Bois, Kim Crawford, Meiomi, Mark West, Franciscan Estate, Ruffino and The Prisoner. The company’s premium spirits brands include SVEDKA Vodka, Casa Noble Tequila and High West Whiskey.
Based in Victor, N.Y., the company believes that industry leadership involves a commitment to brand building, our trade partners, the environment, our investors and to consumers around the world who choose our products when celebrating big moments or enjoying quiet ones. Founded in 1945, Constellation has grown to become a significant player in the beverage alcohol industry with more than 100 brands in its portfolio; about 40 wineries, breweries and distilleries; and approximately 10,000 talented employees. We express our company vision: to elevate life with every glass raised. To learn more, follow us on Twitter @cbrands and visit www.cbrands.com.