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29.06.2015 Gebr. Heinemann and VM Finance Group form joint venture in Romania

Gebr. Heinemann SE & Co. KG (“Gebr. Heinemann” or “GH”), а leader in the travel retail market, and VM Finance Group AD (“VMFG”), a major Bulgarian economic group, announced the creation of a 50/50 joint venture operating in the FMCG distribution market in Romania. The venture, which will operate under the name of Heinrig Food and Beverages (“HF&B” or the “Company”), shall capitalize on GH’s business experience in Romania and VMFG’s long history and know-how in the area of FMCG marketing and distribution. It will be well-positioned for future rapid growth.

Gebr. Heinemann will contribute its domestic distribution business in Romania into HF&B while VMFG will acquire 50% of the shares of the Company. The management of the joint venture will combine the best practices of both GH with its global industry presence and VMFG with its strong position and know-how in FMCG marketing and distribution.

This strategic combination is taking place in a promising market as Romania is expected to return on the economic growth path. HF&B has a strong portfolio which shall be complemented by VMFG’s long-term relationships and brands. Once completed, the transaction will combine the client base, supplier relationships and know-how of the parties to create an industry leader.
Gebr. Heinemann and VMFG have a long history of successful partnership as they have a JV operating in the area of travel retail on the territory of Bulgaria for more than 10 years.
“The JV with a global leader like Gebr. Heinemann is a clear recognition of our success in the FMCG distribution market. VMFG has a history of successful collaboration with international companies like Gebr. Heinemann and Edenred,” said Vassil Mirtchev, Chairman of the Board of Directors of VMFG. “This transaction will allow VMFG to start a process of regional expansion and open up new growth opportunities. Our goal is to become a universal distributor by enriching our portfolio of food and non-food products and at the same time to increase our total sales volume several times within 3-4 years. Bulgarian manufacturers are welcome to discuss with us opportunities for collaboration on the Romanian market”.

“Completing this transaction with our reliable and recognized partner in travel retail will help us to better unlock the potential of the market. I am especially optimistic about the relationship we are setting up, which will help drive the business in Romania. The VMFG has a proven track record in building up FMCG brands” said Peter Irion, Executive Director of Gebr. Heinemann.
The deal was signed in June 2015.

About Heinrig Food & Beverages

Heinrig Food & Beverages (“HF&B”), a leader on the Romanian distribution market, is a company specialized in spirits, wines, confectionary, and tobacco products.
The company was part of Heinrig Distribution until the beginning of 2015 when it separated as a standalone entity, to ensure continued growth on the Romanian market for premium brands belonging to more than 30 companies around the world. The Company partners with Zwack Unicum NyRt, De Kuyper Royal Distillers, Underberg AG., STROH AUSTRIA GESELLSCHAFT MBH, BORCO INTERNATIONAL GmbH, Belvedere Group, Marchesi Antinori S.p.A., Champagne Taittinger, FREIXENET, S.A., Casa Vinicola Zonin, E. & J. Gallo, Peter Lehmann Wines, Lafite Rothschild, Rausch Schokoladen GmbH., Jelly Belly Candy Co and others.

The newly formed company carries on the impeccable reputation of its origins set in 2004, with high value put on integrity, quality of service and excellence in distribution and management.
HF&B is a partner with the majority of the international and local retail chains present on the Romanian market and has a well-developed network of distribution partners within the Romanian territory. The prospects of HF&B continued growth are excellent, ensured by a strategic mix, with solid financial background and an experienced, professional team that is proactively seeking to develop new categories.