Following the company’s successful $15 million IPO capital raising, Australian craft beverage company Founders First (ASX: FFL) has announced the acquisition of Kangaroo Island Distillery (KIS) for $1.5 million.
The company has been busy since listing back in December 2019, with similar sized acquisitions in Hunter Valley and Moonee Ponds, and a significant convertible note subscription in craft beer, non-beer, and cider brewery Sparkke Group.
KIS was established in 2006, making it one of Australia’s first dedicated craft gin distilleries. The business cemented themselves as world class quality after the companies “O’Gin” brand was announced ‘Worlds Best Contemporary Gin’ at the 2019 International Wine and Spirits Competition, and having previously won major awards in London, New York, San Francisco and Hong Kong.
Founders First has also agreed to enter into employment agreements with the original founders of the distillery, Jon and Sarah Lark, to provide ongoing ambassadorial and operational support to the business.
The distillery is recommended by South Australia Tourism as a key destination when visiting Kangaroo Island, having survived the effects from the recent bushfires that devastated the popular getaway location.
“The local and global craft spirits market continues to demonstrate exponential growth, with gin performing extremely well, and with whisky in particular a high value growth opportunity,” said Founders First Managing Director Mark Haysman.
“KIS is a very important and complementary addition to our internationally acclaimed spirits portfolio. We are excited to partner with Jon and Sarah to unlock and accelerate the KIS brand’s fullest potential.”
Although trading below the IPO issue price of $0.50, shares in FFL responded well to the announcement, reaching a high of $0.345 in morning trade, a rise of 4.54% despite a significant market sell-off.