In 2018 Constellation Brands announced a global effort to invest in female-led or female-founded businesses in the alcohol beverage space with their Focus on Female Founders program. Since then they have continued to make investments in the space.
Its latest minority investment is in the hard seltzer space with PRESS Premium Alcohol Seltzer. PRESS is based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and is produced by XYZ Beverage, LLC. (dba Press Premium Alcohol Seltzer).
PRESS was co-founded by Amy Walberg and her business partner Jim Sorenson in 2015 and has already achieved a top-10 position in the seltzer category with its strong product quality and unique premium flavors such as Blackberry Hibiscus, Pomegranate Ginger, Lime Lemongrass, and Grapefruit Cardamom. PRESS is made with a lower alcohol by volume (ABV 4%) for consumers who prefer lower ABV drinks, and to allow PRESS’ complex flavors to break through.
“Constellation has a wonderful tradition of supporting woman-owned beverage ventures and their success in building high-end, high-margin brands is a perfect fit for PRESS Premium Alcohol Seltzer’s premium positioning,” Press Premium Alcohol Seltzer co-founder Amy Walberg stated. “This minority investment will allow us to more broadly tell our compelling brand story and accelerate pace in reaching our goals as an independent brand.”
Walberg will continue to build the brand as the CEO and principal decision-maker for PRESS.
Constellation vice president Jen Evans explained what the beer, wine and spirits giant is looking for in potential partners. “Overall, we’re looking to invest in categories that we believe represent the future of beverage alcohol and adjacent categories,” she stated. “Within those high growth areas, we’re looking for brands that are poised to outpace the competition. We’re looking for strong, well-positioned brands, with exceptional quality and high margins. We’re looking for a strong proof of concept – we like to see brands that have been in market long enough to prove that they can sustain and grow consumer demand. We’re also looking for high performing management teams with a passion for building their brand.”
“As an independent, woman-led and co-owned brand made of natural ingredients, this quality premium seltzer fits Constellation’s Focus on Female Founders program and the company’s overall high-end strategy.”
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Generational Equity Executive Managing Director of M&A – Central Region, Michael Goss and his team, led by Managing Director, Mergers & Acquisitions Ryan Johnson assisted Generational Capital Markets Senior M&A Advisor, Stephen Dinehart to successfully close the deal. Senior Managing Director Rick Buchoz established the initial relationship with Press Premium Alcohol Seltzer.
Dinehart stated, “The investment of Constellation Brands not only will accelerate both market volume and market share for XYZ Beverage but it will enable Press Premium Alcohol Seltzer to cement its position as the premium brand of the alcohol seltzer market. It definitely places our client in a winning position in this expanding market segment.”
Constellation Brands is a leading international producer of and marketer of beer, wine and spirits with operations in the U.S., Mexico, New Zealand, Italy and Canada. The company’s Constellation Ventures include investments in Catoctin Creek Distilling, Bardstown Bourbon Company, Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery, Real McCoy Spirits Corp. and Copper & Kings American Brandy.