Numerous companies want to privatize producers of Extra Zytnia vodka

opublikowano: 24-07-2008, 13:48

Warsaw (Puls Biznesu) – The privatization of the last state-owned vodka producers in Poland is about to be launched.

After the government gave up the idea to build the Polish Vodka Group, the ministry of the treasury decided to speed up privatization of the last state-owned Polmos companies, i.e. the firms producing vodka. Two of them, including Polmos Bielsko-Biala and Polmos Jozefow, arise the biggest interest. They both produce famous Extra Zytnia vodka.

“We are to receive analyses from BDM brokerage with the evaluation of the two companies. Unless we have doubts, we will start privatization in August. An open invitation will be published”, Joanna Schmid, deputy minister of the treasury said.

The two companies will be privatized.

“Polmos Bielsko-Biala and Polmos Jozefow are two best state-owned vodka producers. In the first quarter, they had, respectively PLN 330,000 (EUR 101,851) and PLN 77,000 of net income. We have already received enquiries from Polish and foreign investors”, Joanna Schmid added.

The remaining Polmos companies facing privatization, including, among others, Szczecin, Konin and Torun have financial difficulties but there are investors ready to buy the first two of them. The producers from Lodz, Sieradz and Warsaw are being closed.

No company has so far officially said it is interested in Polmos companies.

“I believe, that neither CEDC, nor Sobieski or Pernod Ricard group will want to privatize the firms. However, Polmos Lublin would be interested. The company attempted to buy, among others, Polmos Bialystok and its owner, Oak Tree Capital fund is founding a vodka group in Central Europe”, Leszek Wiwala, the CEO of the association the Polish Vodka Industry commented.

He also believed that Diageo, Nemiroff or Brown Forman will not be interested in privatization as they don’t lack capacity.

However, Polish distributors of alcohol may try to take part in the privatization.

“People say that there is a group of wholesalers who would like to acquire Polmos companies and build a counter-balance against CEDC and Grupa Sobieski”, Leszek Wiwala said.

CEDC and Sobieski produce vodka but at the same time are important distributors.

The alcohol market in Poland is worth over PLN 20bn annually. Strong alcohols constitute over PLN 8bn.

(PLN 1 = EUR 0.309)

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