Freixenet ‘receives buyout offer’

Reports have emerged that Spain’s biggest Cava producer, Freixenet, has received a buyout offer.

Freixenet

Freixenet, Spain’s largest sparkling wine producer, posted a 71% drop in profits in its last financial year 

A “source close to the producer” said the 155-year-old sparkling wine brand had received an offer to purchase the company on Tuesday, Reuters reported. No further details were provided.

The Freixenet source said that a meeting had been held and a purchase proposal had been submitted, but that a confidentiality agreement meant that no further information could be given at this time.

Meanwhile, the German drinks group Henkell & Co has confirmed that it is in preliminary talks with the Catalan company over a possible “co-operation”, a spokesman for Henkell said.

Founded in 1861, Freixenet owns 18 wineries across three continents and is one of the best-known Spanish wine brands.

Wiesbaden-based Henkell, a subsidiary of Dr Oetker, owns a number of Sekt, Champagne, Prosecco and Cava producers among its stable of brands.

Freixenet is owned by three branches of the founding Ferrer family which may complicate any potential sale, Spanish media said.

Jose Ferrer and his four children own a 42% stake in Freixenet while the Hevia Ferrer brothers control 29%. A third branch of family, the Bonet Ferrers, own another 29%.

Spanish media has further reported that Jose Ferrer and his family are against the idea of a buyout and are considering making a counter offer to keep the company in family hands.

Freixenet’s most recent annual report showed a 5.6% fall in sales to €501 million (£398m) and a 71% decline in profits to just €2.2m (£1.8m).

The drinks business has contacted Freixenet for comment and is awaiting a response.

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