Companies

Alltech looking to enter beverages business in India

M Somasekhar | Updated on December 18, 2019 Published on December 18, 2019

Mark Lyons, President & CEO of Alltech

The US-based agri and animal nutrition company Alltech is keen to enter the beverages and distillery sector in India, according to Mark Lyons, its President and CEO.

The $2-billion, Kentucky-based company, which has a strong presence in India with the organic trace mineral manufacturing plant in Pune for animal feed, is scouting for partners in its new venture.

In China, Alltech has worked with a local partner. A similar model can be pursued in India, based on the regulatory norms, Lyons told BusinessLine during his recent visit to Hyderabad.

He received the Poultry Conference’s Lifetime Achievement Award, conferred posthumously on his father Pearse Lyons, an Irish entrepreneur and scientist, who along with his wife, Deirdre, founded Alltech in 1980 to research and deliver nutrition products for plants, animals and people.

Also read: Alltech to set up Analytics Lab in India

Global presence

Globally, Alltech has more than 100 production facilities and four bioscience centres and employs about 6,000 people.

“My father would always say that distilling and brewing was 99 per cent passion and 1 per cent revenues for the company, but I intend to expand it as its contribution is growing,” Lyons said.

The diversification into spirits began with the acquisition of the Lexington Brewing and Distilling Company in Kentucky in 1999. Pearse Lyons, who obtained a doctorate in brewing and distilling, hailed from five generations of coopers, who supplied barrels to many of Dublin’s distilleries. He was passionate about the alcohol and beverages business and wanted to see it emerge as one of the top 50 craft brewers in the world.

Alltech’s beer and spirits business generates about $50-60 million annually. It has three breweries (two in the US and one in Ireland) and three distilleries (two in Ireland and one in the US).

Potential in beverages

Though the contribution to the overall turnover is small, the potential is promising and the plan is to double revenues in the next 3-4 years, he said. The company is into making crafts beer, whiskies and gins. Among its popular brands are Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale, Finn Lager and Foxes Rock Ale etc.

The push is on the spirits side and the company launched three gins last year, two in Ireland and one in the US.

In June 2018, Alltech invested up to $15 million in its operations in Pikeville, Kentucky. In China, Alltech has emerged in five years as the first independently owned American Craft brewery to produce beer for national distribution. It sells 10 different brews.

Published on December 18, 2019
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