INDIA: Kyndal back in the race for UDV whiskies

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The Scotch whisky company, Kyndal, is reported to have joined the race to buy the whisky brands being sold by UDV India. According to the Indian business press, Kyndal has made a bid for the brands through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Kyndal India Ltd. The company would not comment on the speculation.

"We have stated our ambition to grow the business both organically and through acquisitions. We will, however, not be drawn on speculation as to who those talks are with at any given time," a spokesman for Kyndal said.

Kyndal, which was formed through a management buyout of the Jim Beam Brands Scotch whisky business, was one of the companies first linked with acquiring the UDV Indian whisky brands and manufacturing unit when they were placed on the market earlier in the year. UDV looking to sell its flagship domestic brands Gilbey's Green Label, Gilbey's White Label, Old Gold and Gold, and a manufacturing unit near Pune in order to focus on its priority international brands. The Indian brands are thought to have annual sales of around £20m (€32m).

However, last month, it emerged that four bidders, not including Kyndal, were in the running for the brands. They were McDowell & Co Ltd, Shaw Wallace & Co Ltd, Whytehall India Ltd, a joint venture between Bacardi and Radico Khaitan, and a management buyout led by UDV India chief, Mr Deepak Roy. UDV has named DSP Meryll Lynch as the merchant banker for the deal which is expected to go through within the next month.

Companies: Bacardi Ltd

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