Several European trade pubs are reporting that Tokyo-based global financial services group Nomura Financials is alerting its clients about pending acquisitions by Brown-Forman Corp.
Part of Nomura Group, the multinational corporation that bought Lehman Brothers back in 2008, Nomura Financials is shaking up the beverage biz by telling clients to expect the Louisville-based alcoholic beverages company to make major acquisitions.
The Jack Daniels owner wants to add to its Bourbon brands with a Scotch whisky or Irish whiskey addition, Nomura said in a client note issued today (1 October). It also seeks to follow a recent buyout of Finland-based Maximus vodka with more acquisitions in the category, the note said. Brown-Forman already owns the Finlandia vodka brand, which it bought in 2000. The company will fund any deal with a 2.5x net debt/ebitda leverage that should free up $3bn, the note said, adding that smaller specific brand or country deals would be expected.
Completely unreported in Louisvillle (except by yours truly), Brown-Forman bought Maximus, a big Polish vodka brand, back in 2011.
Also completely ignored by the local media, Brown-Forman spends gazillions of dollars on marketing. So whatever they buy, sells just because they saturate synapses that govern consumers’ impulse buys!
Brown-Forman spent about $10 million just on its Jack Daniel’s Christmas ad blitz last December.
BF has tons of cash to spend after reporting a huge start to its fiscal year, which runs July to June.
Net profits in the three months to the end of July rose by 25 percent to $147.5 million,with total revenue rising by 4 percent over the same period, FY 2010/2011 to $878.1 million.
Net income rose 20 percent to $222 million from about $182 million for the same quarter one year earlier.
We’ve predicted for months now that Brown-Forman and Beam might get together.
Could this be the moment?