Central European Distribution Corporation has acquired Imperial Sp. z o.o., an alcohol distributor in north-east Poland. The company said yesterday (16 August) that it acquired 100% of the distributor's shares for approximately US$2.19m, of which 79% will be paid in cash and 21% will be paid in shares of common stock of CEDC.

The company has received anti-monopoly approval for the transaction.

The shares of CEDC common stock that will be issued as part of the purchase price are subject to a one-year lock-up period.

In a statement, William Carey, president and CEO of CEDC, said: "We are pleased with this acquisition as it increases our distribution coverage in the northeast of Poland where Polmos Bialystok is located. Imperial Sp. z o.o. has been in the alcohol distribution business for over 10 years and brings a strong management team and sales force to our group, as well as a client base of over 1,000. Imperial Sp. z o.o. had 2004 annual net sales of approximately US$20m.

 "As a result of this acquisition, we are raising our 2005 full year net sales guidance from US$700-US$720m to US$705-US$725m and full year fully diluted earnings per share guidance from US$1.56-US$1.66 to US$1.57-US$1.67.

"With the acquisition of Imperial Sp. z o.o., we have acquired distribution companies in 2005 with approximately US$55m in annualised net sales.

"We are anticipating acquiring additional distribution companies with annualised net sales of US$25-US$45m during the remainder of 2005. We are also raising 2006 full year net sales guidance from US$875-US$900m to US$895-US$920m and full year fully diluted earnings per share guidance from US$1.90-US$2.10 to US$1.92-US$2.12."