Privately owned BULLDOG Gin founded in 2007 by entrepreneur and former JP Morgan investment banker Anshuman Vohra, has been sold to Gruppo Campari for $58.4 million (€ 50.9 million), plus working capital and assumed liabilities for $3.4 million (€ 3.1 million).
A 5.7 Multiple of 2016 Revenue
The deal leaves cash-on-hand and other assets on BULLDOG’s balance sheet, resulting in approximate proceeds of $70 million at closing to BULLDOG’s shareholders, a multiple of 5.7x BULLDOG’s full-year 2016 revenue. Additionally, BULLDOG may receive an earn-out, payable upon the achievement of certain targets through 2021, potentially significantly increasing the total consideration. The earn-out is based on sales exceeding current plan and forecasts in 2019, 2020, and/or 2021.
The all-cash transaction will result in distribution to shareholders of approximately $70 million, plus potential additional future consideration of an earn-out.
A Gin Started in the USA, Now in 95 Countries
Launched in the USA in 2007 and subsequently in Europe, BULLDOG Gin has experienced a meteoric rise and is the #4 premium gin in the world (IWSR) and also the fastest growing premium gin in the world* by annual growth rate. The brand is available today in 95 countries, with a strong concentration in Europe. Spain, Benelux, Germany, the UK, Global Travel Retail, and the USA are currently the brand’s largest markets. BULLDOG Gin shipped ~150,000 9L cases and achieved net sales of USD $12+ million in 2016, increases of 24% and 22% year-over-year, respectively.
Distilled in England
BULLDOG Gin is based on a distinctive blend of 12 botanicals from eight countries. The gin is quadruple distilled in traditional copper pot stills at the world’s foremost gin distiller, based in England.
Distributed by Campari Since 2014
Gruppo Campari has distributed BULLDOG Gin since 2014 through its own distribution network, including the Global Travel Retail channel, by virtue of an exclusive five-year agreement with an attached call option to acquire ownership of the brand in 2020. Following a renegotiation of the deal terms, Gruppo Campari accelerated its purchase of the brand. The new deal structure enables Gruppo Campari to achieve a financially attractive proposition, allowing it to fully exploit the brand’s growth potential going forward by taking full control of the marketing strategy as well as the brand building initiatives.
Bob Kunze-Concewitz, Chief Executive Officer of Campari said, “We are very pleased to initiate the acquisition of BULLDOG Gin which we have successfully been distributing since 2014. This deal is an opportunity to consolidate our presence as a key player in the attractive super premium gin category via a super-premium brand with significant growth potential. By gaining full control of BULLDOG Gin’s marketing, strategy and brand building initiatives, we are strongly positioned to exploit the brand’s full potential.
From a distribution stand point thanks to BULLDOG Gin we will further increase our on-premise focus, particularly in the US, where the Group is currently strengthening its on-trade capabilities. By acquiring a fast growing, profitable and margin accretive brand, this deal is a perfect fit with Campari’s acquisition criteria in terms of type of brands and distribution fit.”
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Founder to Stay on for Now
Anshuman Vohra will stay on for a period of time in a Founder/Brand Ambassador capacity. Vohra says, “BULLDOG has always been a labor of love for me and I’m quite pleased to hand over control of BULLDOG to a venerable institution such as Gruppo Campari. I’ve had the pleasure of working with their very professional organization for the last few years and am confident the brand will continue to excel in its new home.”
ALANTRA acted as exclusive financial advisor and Gunderson Dettmer Stough Villeneuve Franklin & Hachigian, LLP acted as legal advisor to BULLDOG on this transaction. Sidley Austin acted as legal advisor to Gruppo Campari.
Gruppo Campari is a major player in the global spirits industry, with a portfolio of over 50 premium and super premium brands, spreading across Global, Regional and Local priorities. Global Priorities, the Group’s key focus, include Aperol, Appleton Estate, Campari, SKYY, Wild Turkey and Grand Marnier.
The closing is expected by mid February 2017.
*Compound annual growth rate (CAGR) 2010-2015, the IWSR 2016