Kensington Distillers & Vintners buys 1960 Rootz

London-based Kensington Distillers and Vintners Limited (KDV) has acquired the 1960 Rootz brand in Nigeria from AB InBev. The purchase includes the state-of-the-art manufacturing plant used to produce 1960 Rootz.

Kensington Distillers & Vintners said a new business name has been formed – Monument Distillers and the production facility will soon be moved from AB InBev’s Port Harcourt production facility to Lagos where Kensington Distillers’s offices are based.

Monument Distillers Managing Director, Ajay Malhotra, assures Nigerians that the 1960 Rootz brand will remain unchanged.

“AB InBev built an extremely successful brand in 1960 Rootz, and we believe it has the potential to lead this uniquely Nigerian flavoured spirits category which grew by 21% from 2016 to 2017. We won’t be changing anything – the brand’s much- loved taste will remain the sam,” he said.

“We are delighted to be given the opportunity to continue to grow 1960 Rootz and for us to use our newly-formed Monument Distillers business to accelerate the growth of our international brands.”

Kensington Distillers which counts Bannerman’s Finest Scotch Whiskey and Grace du Roi Fine Wines as some of its brands, said that the new subsidiary, Monument Distillers will be launching a number of exciting new international brands in Nigeria soon under the guidance of respected board members.

The board members includes liquor industry veteran, Mark Bowman, who led SABMiller Africa across 18 African markets directly and a further 21 in partnership with the Castel Group; Rowan Leibbrandt, who began his liquor industry career working across multiple European markets in a variety of commercial and marketing roles for William Grant & Sons and liquor giants, Pernod-Ricard, before launching KDV and rapidly-growing the South African liquor distributor, Truman & Orange; Michael Ajukwu, another Monumental Distiller Board member, also sits on the boards of International Breweries Plc (part of AB InBev), Sterling Bank Plc, Novotel PH and Tiger Brands SA. The fourth board member, Olayemi Cardoso serves as Chairman of Citibank Nigeria and Chairman of African Venture Philanthropy Alliance (AVPA).

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