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AB Inbev’s ZX Ventures acquires UK spirits firm Atom Group

DBR Staff Writer Published 19 April 2018

AB Inbev’s innovation unit ZX Ventures has acquired UK-based spirits company Atom Group for an undisclosed amount.

Atom Group, which is based in Kent, UK, consists of three units including Master of Malt, an online retailer, Atom Brands, a spirits producer, and Maverick Drinks, a dedicated maker of craft spirits.

It encompasses the entire life-cycle of spirits, from inception, prototyping, production and brand ownership with Atom Brands; via import, distribution and brand development through Maverick Drinks; to global online retail at Master of Malt.

Atom Brands said the partnership will allow it to move even faster towards its targets of sourcing and bottling the best whiskies, gins, and other spirits available anywhere, and distributing them across the globe.

Atom Brands said: “We couldn’t be more excited about the opportunities that this partnership will open up for the company, our people and our partners throughout the industry.

The deal is  will give Atom Group access to resources  required to scale up its operations, which could mean more whisky for That Boutique-y Whisky Company (TBWC) and other brands in the Boutique-y stable.

The entire team of Atom Brands along with the leadership team including founder Justin Petszaft and business partners Ben Ellefsen, Tom McGuiness and Joel Kelly, will remain unchanged, overseeing the company’s 175 employees.

The team will continue to work on making and selecting fine spirits in the world for its brands.

ZX Ventures was started by AB InBev in 2015 to develop new products and business to address emerging consumer needs. The venture fund operates several global business units in international craft & specialties beer, eCommerce, homebrewing, brand experience, and exploration.

ZX Ventures e-commerce director Andy Logan said: “We loved the leadership team’s passion and enthusiasm for innovation and saw a really good cultural fit. We’re really excited about welcoming the Atom Group family into ZX Ventures and learning from the e-commerce expertise of the Master of Malt team.”


Image: Atom Brands’ London Dry Gin. Photo: Courtesy of Atom Brands.