Telford International (pic: Yellow Tail Hong Kong Facebook page)

Telford International (pic: Yellow Tail Hong Kong Facebook page)

Riding on the back of a strong Q1 performance particularly in wine and spirits, Hong Kong's leading beverage company Telford is planning an IPO.

Hong Kong’s leading beverage company, Telford International, is planning an IPO in Hong Kong, as the 39-year-old, family-owned company eyes an infusion of cash to expand its production and operation.

The company’s profit last year reached HK$220 million, a year-on-year drop of 4.3% amid the pandemic, but its overall turnover climbed slightly by 1%, it disclosed.

Established in 1982, Telford operates both in Hong Kong and mainland China with two subsidiaries across the border in Shenzhen and Shanghai. It offers over 100 brands of natural, healthy and functional beverages and international spirits and wines with a unique mix of in-house as well as third-party brands.

Its spirits and wine division was the main driver behind the company’s revenue. The sector contributed 65.5% or HK$1.22 billion to its overall turnover last year, while its soft drinks including locally renowned brand “Tao Ti” accounts for 23.6% of its sales.

Yellow Tail (pic: Yellow Tail)
Australia’s large volume wine brand Yellow Tail is one of the wines in Telford’s portfolio (pic: Yellow Tail)

Its business in Hong Kong last year was hurdled by local government’s strict social distancing measures, resulting in 11% drop in sales. Across the border in mainland China, its revenue grew 14.9% to HK$984 million last year, it reveals.

This year, the group’s business is looking up. The first-quarter sales of international spirits and wines soared by 108.8%from 2020’s HK$198 million to HK$413 million this year, accounting for 66% of its income.

Its portfolio includes large volume wine brands, Australia’s Yellow Tail, Prosecco brand Bottega, and its spirits include Remy Martin, Grey Goose, Jack Daniel’s and among other brands.

In 2020, the company ranked 2nd in the natural, healthy and functional soft beverage market in Hong Kong, and 3rd and 4th in import international spirits market in Hong Kong and mainland China, respectively, in terms of retail sales value, according to Frost & Sullivan.

With the fresh round of cash injection, Telford says it plans to improve product and production capabilities, brand building, marketing, strategic partnerships, investment and merging.

Jefferies Hong Kong and HSBC Corporate Finance (Hong Kong) are the joint sponsors of the offering.

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