Philippine magnate Andrew Tan, whose Emperador empire bought Harveys, Terry and Fundador on Saturday, arrived to have a look round the bodegas in Jerez on Monday where he signed a butt with the words “A new era begins.” He was impressed by the brandy bodega La Mezquita and met the workforce of 160 at the various production centres in the city to whom he expressed enthusiasm. The distillery in Tomelloso (La Mancha) has a further workforce of 15.
Mr Tan assured them that Emperador will do all it can to expand the brandy and Sherry markets in different parts of Asia. The magnate, of Chinese origin, explained: “I came to Jerez 33 years ago to learn how to make brandy and since then it has been very close to my heart. 42 years ago my father was so pleased when I graduated from university that he and his best friends opened – and drank – three bottles of Fundador, so I have fond memories of it and it has always been a part of our celebrations.” His passion for brandy goes farther than that, however, and he expressed his satisfaction in the purchase also of Tres Cepas and Centenario.
|Andrew Tan in Jerez (foto:diariodejerez)|
After successive changes of ownership, what used to be Domecq lost emblematic Sherry brands like the La Ina range (now Lustau), the VORS wines and the brandies Carlos I and Carlos III (now Osborne), but Beam Suntory kept the Terry and Harveys Sherries. Harveys Bristol Cream is the leading brand in Britain, one of Emperador’s strategic markets where just last year they bought Whyte & Mackay, the 5th largest Scotch whisky distiller in an ambitious expansion project.
Generally speaking the wine and spirit trade in Jerez is happy with the arrival of Emperador as this investment could develop sales of Jerez brandy in the Philippines market, its biggest export market with over 4 million litres, and that might restore some prestige to the brandy of Jerez.