The Rohatyn Group Sells BevCo to Varun Beverages

The sale of The Beverage Company Proprietary Limited (“BevCo”), a South African-based beverage manufacturer and distributor, to India-based Varun Beverages Ltd (“VBL”), a prominent bottler for PepsiCo, has been officially announced by The Rohatyn Group (“TRG”), a global asset manager specializing in emerging markets and real assets.

Established in 2018 through the merger of Little Green Beverages and SoftBev, BevCo swiftly solidified its position as the largest independently owned beverage producer and distributor in South Africa. With a diverse portfolio encompassing its own brands, energy drinks, and franchise rights from PepsiCo in South Africa, Lesotho, and Eswatini, as well as distribution rights for Namibia and Botswana, BevCo operates five manufacturing facilities across South Africa boasting an impressive installed capacity of 3,600 bottles per minute (“BPM”).

Jonathan Matthews, a Partner at TRG, noted, “Since 2018, BevCo has experienced significant expansion, with its workforce quadrupling and gross sales reaching approximately 63 million cases annually. Moreover, the company broadened its product range by incorporating the manufacturing and distribution of PepsiCo brands within the region. This growth has been underpinned by a commitment to innovation, regional expansion, and sustainable business practices.”

Peter Spies, CEO of BevCo, emphasized, “Our management team and shareholders have consistently maintained a long-term vision for the company, focusing on accelerating the development of new revenue streams and scaling operations while upholding strong relationships with key stakeholders. The acquisition by Varun Beverages underscores the attractiveness of scaled South African enterprises to global industry players.”

Glynn Potgieter, Managing Director at TRG and a board member of BevCo, elaborated, “Navigating the challenging macroeconomic conditions in our target markets necessitates careful planning and the cultivation of businesses with tangible, recognizable value for potential acquirers. Successful exit strategies demand skilled negotiation, resilience, and a collaborative approach, factors that were instrumental in facilitating BevCo’s sale to Varun Beverages.”

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