Last update: 05-Dec-2013 3:57 pm
Thursday, December 05, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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CL sale of Hine is fourth in 250 years
The sale earlier this month by CL World Brands of Thomas Hine and Company Cognac to EDV SAS marks the fourth time in the company’s 250 year history that it has changed hands. Founded in 1763, Hine is the only Cognac maker to possess a UK Royal Warrant. The company first changed hands when the Hine family soldity to the Distillers Company (DCL) in 1971. When Guinness bought DCL in 1987, Hine was sold to Moët-Hennessy, which, in turn sold the Cognac to CL World Brands in 2003.
Hine has long been considered a prized brand and is respected for its long history, consistent and distinctive style, extensive aged stocks, Grande Champagne vineyards and broad product range. Key to Hine’s continuity in quality and presentation is Bernard Hine, a sixth-generation family member who has remained within the company throughout its changes of ownership. He has worked at the house for 50 years—his first day at Hine was 1 August 1963, when he was 24. As a result, Hine has enjoyed continuity in the projection of its image and the character of its cognacs.
The new owner of Hine, EDV SAS, is a French company that is controlled by descendants of the family behind wine trader and distributor Établissements Nicolas. The value of the transaction has not been disclosed, but reports estimate it at between €40 million (US$53.5 million) and €60 million. In the past three years CL has divested much of its drinks business, having sold its Scotch whisky arm Burn Stewart Distillers to Distell, and a majority stake of Lascelles deMercado, owner of Appleton Estate Rum, to Campari.
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