FRANCE: Belvedere to sell Polish distribution arm
- Polish distribution added to list of assets for sale
- Marie Brizard sale talks progress
Belvedere seeks asset sales to cut debt
Troubled French drinks group Belvédère has confirmed that it is in negotiations to sell its Polish distribution businesses in order to reduce debt.
The Sobieski vodka producer will sell the division as part of a deal with French courts to emerge from bankruptcy protection.
Poland is a key market for Belvédère, but its distribution business there reported a fall in net sales to EUR152.2m (US$193m) in 2009, compared to EUR266.5m the previous year.
Belvédère’s sale of assets also includes spirits subsidiary Marie Brizard. A company spokesman told just-drinks today (13 May) that negotiations “were going well with several candidates”.
Quizzed on whether a deal would be concluded in line with the deadline of end-June 2010, set by the court, he said: “Finding the right candidate at the right price takes time but I wouldn’t want to exclude the possibility of closure by end-June.”
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