Constellation Brands is back to buying leading U.S. craft producers with the purchase, announced today, of Copper & Kings American Brandy Co.
The Louisville-based Copper & Kings is known for its large lineup of brandy, gin, absinthe and liqueur, with a wide range of experimental releases.
“As an innovative distillery regarded for its experimental attitude and highly rated craft spirits, Copper & Kings American Brandy represents a significant growth opportunity for us and reinforces our continued commitment to premium spirits,” says Bill Newlands, president and chief executive officer, Constellation Brands. “American Craft Brandy is a fast-growing category that resonates with consumers, specifically among whiskey drinkers, and provides an excellent bridge between fine wine and craft bourbon. Copper & Kings’ prime location in Bourbon Country also presents an opportunity for Constellation to drive brand awareness and further expand the brand’s direct-to-consumer and retail routes to market.”
Copper & Kings American Brandy was initially a minority investment through Constellation’s venture capital group.
“With entrepreneurship and quality being part of Constellation’s core values, it’s gratifying to see those values come to life through our first full Ventures acquisition in Copper & Kings,” says Jennifer Evans, vice president of Constellation Ventures. “When making a Ventures investment, we look for brands that want to push boundaries, grow with consumers, and expand their current markets. Copper and Kings checks all those boxes, and we look forward to integrating them into our wine and spirits portfolio.”
Copper & Kings American Brandy was founded in 2014 by beverage industry entrepreneurs Joe and Lesley Heron, and uses small batch copper pot-distillation and unconventional methods, like sonic aging and solera blending, to craft a variety of non-traditional spirits.
“As Copper & Kings moves into this next phase, we feel immense pride in what we’ve accomplished together with Constellation Brands,” says founder and CEO Joe Heron. “Copper & Kings and Constellation have had a symbiotic relationship right from the start. Because of that shared culture of innovation, entrepreneurship, and respect for the environment, as well as a good personal relationship, Lesley and I know we are leaving Copper & Kings in good hands. The stars are beautifully aligned.”
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.