Global investment firm buys KWV for R1.15 billion

UK-based investment group Vasari has finalised its acquisition of the operational assets of KWV for a sum of R1.15 billion. Vasari sees the South African wine and spirits producer as a “strategic asset” that will enable it to capitalise on growth opportunities in the wine and brandy sector. KWV was sold to Vasari by Niveus Holdings, the listed investment holding company majority controlled by HCI. John Copelyn, HCI CEO, writing in the company’s latest annual report, said that the exit from KWV was “very lucrative”, and that “the price achieved effectively doubled the value of Niveus’s investment over five years”. Boyce Lloyd (pictured), an SABMiller executive with more than 20 years of experience in the beverage industry, will become the new KWV CEO from November. Until recently Lloyd was the integration director for the AB InBev-SABMiller merger. Vasari has investments in various areas, such as alcoholic beverages, confectionary, soft drinks, and foods, across various markets, including Europe, Africa and Asia. Among its brands are independent Scotch whisky producer Whyte & Mackay, and Ethiopian brewer, Dashen Brewery.