Charmer Sunbelt And Wirtz Beverage Agree To Merge As Breakthru Beverage GroupOctober 20, 2015
Two of the U.S. market’s leading wholesalers of spirits and wine have agreed to merge, creating a distribution giant with $6 billion in annual sales. Charmer Sunbelt and Wirtz Beverage have announced that they will join forces and trade as Breakthru Beverage Group. The new organization will be headquartered in New York with a corporate leadership presence in Chicago.
The combined entity will have operations in 16 markets and employ more than 7,000 people. Wirtz chairman Rocky Wirtz and Charmer Sunbelt chairman Charles Merinoff will serve as co-chairmen of Breakthru, while Wirtz president Danny Wirtz will become vice chairman and Charmer vice chairman Greg Baird has been named president and CEO.
The two wholesalers have a limited geographical overlap and share many of the same supplier partners. Charmer currently operates in Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Virginia, and the District of Columbia, and has interests in the Alabama and Mississippi markets. Wirtz operates in Illinois, Wisconsin, Nevada, Minnesota, Missouri, Iowa, and throughout Canada.
Alliance Beverage in Arizona will continue to be a joint venture between Breakthru and the Glazer family, and Breakthru will have interests in Alabama and Mississippi with the Glazer and Young families. Charmer and Wirtz said “the markets of Canada, Connecticut, Iowa, Missouri and New York, will not be owned by the Company. However, Charmer Sunbelt and the Wirtz family anticipate continuing their respective partnership, management and supportive relationships with these affiliated companies.”
“Charlie and his team have built an incredible company and we have a lot of similarities in our culture and growth strategy,” said Rocky Wirtz. Charles Merinoff added, “Both Charmer Sunbelt and Wirtz have a history of passion, innovation and winning in the marketplace. Together, the sky’s the limit.”Subscribe to Shanken News Daily’s Email Newsletter, delivered to your inbox each morning.