Heineken acquires a minority stake in Double Dutch

The Heineken family has acquired a minority stake in premium tonic and mixer brand Double Dutch, owned by Dutch twin sisters, Raissa and Joyce de Haas.

Double Dutch founders, twin sisters Raissa and Joyce de Haas

The stake of just under 10% provides new capital for Double Dutch to further invest in the UK-based brand and grow its presence in international markets.

As part of the agreement, Michel de Carvalho, husband of Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken, has joined the supervisory board of Double Dutch Drinks. Michel de Carvalho owns a 23% stake in Heineken and is executive director of the beer giant.

The Heineken family has stakes in multiple on-trade groups and Michel will use his global network to support Double Dutch’s growth plans worldwide.

As a major shareholder of Heineken beer, de Carvalho’s experience of tapping into new markets will be an invaluable asset when it comes to growing the premium mixer brand.

“This is our first family venture into tonics and Double Dutch is an exciting brand with two driven, ambitious young Dutch women entrepreneurs behind it.

“No longer a start-up brand, it has captured an 8% market share in the UK which is a testament to the founders’ hard work and tenacity,” Michel de Carvalho said.

“I am optimistic, despite the challenges that the current pandemic presents, that Double Dutch will continue to grow exponentially as it has done over the last three years.

“I see the growth in premium tonics continuing, with the demand for luxury soft drinks, healthier low sugar alternatives and mixers for exclusive variants of gin and vodka increasing, and Double Dutch fulfils all of those,” he added.

Raissa de Haas, co-founder of Double Dutch, added: “We are delighted to have the Heineken family on board and it’s an honour that they recognise the potential of our business.

“As well as being hugely exciting commercially, the relationship is a perfect cultural fit – both businesses are Dutch, family-owned and female-driven – we couldn’t be happier.”

We recently reported that premium brands tend to fare well during times of financial crisis, with fellow premium mixer brand Fever-Tree confident that the category will survive lockdown.

Double Dutch Drinks was founded in 2015 and now sells over half a million bottles a month in 26 countries. Founded by twin sisters Raissa and Joyce de Haas, within the nine-strong Double Dutch range are tonics and mixers designed for high-end spirits and cocktails.

Among the mixers in the range are Cucumber & Watermelon, Pomegranate & Basil and Cranberry & Ginger. The range also includes Skinny Tonic Water, Soda Water and Ginger Beer.

The tonics and mixers are stocked at bars and restaurants across the UK and are also available at Waitrose and online retailers Ocado and Amazon. The brand has ambitions to be carbon neutral and recently opened new production plants in South Africa and the Netherlands.

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