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Recent Buy: Corby Spirit and Wine Ltd

Corby Spirit and Wine Ltd (CSW.B) is a leading marketer and distributor of spirits and imported wines, clocking in at just over 20% of spirits sales in Canada. The distillery operation was initially incorporated in 1859 and has been building its presence in the industry ever since.

While I have been aware of Corby for many years, I have seriously been considering a stake in the company recently.

Brand Presence

Given that Corby has been in the alcoholic beverage industry for over a century, the company has had the opportunity to fine-tune its approach and consciously build its brand position over time. As a result, the company owns or represents some of the most well known beverages in Canada and abroad.

Read the full article on Seeking Alpha.

Full Disclosure: Long CSW.B

Pictures courtesy of pixabay.com

4 thoughts on “Recent Buy: Corby Spirit and Wine Ltd

  1. Allan says:

    Hi Ryan,

    Wow! You’re writing on SeekingAlpha this is so cool! 🙂

    About that company… I never heard of it before. Here in Quebec Alcohol is mostly government controlled and highly regulated. People are pushing for deregulation but… I don’t think it’s going to happen anytime soon.

    I already have a stake in Liquor Store and my Canadian portfolio is still very small but it sounds like an interesting pick. I will have a look at it and might add it to my watch list.


    1. With 80% of production taking place in Windsor, Corby’s definitely close to home. I’ve been following them for years and finally initiated a stake. It won’t make up a large portion of my portfolio, but I would add some more if it dipped low enough. As you may know, alcohol is actually much cheaper in Quebec than in Ontario. It can basically only be sold at “The Beer Store” or “LCBO” locations as far as I know, here. There’s a movement in Ontario right now to get it sold at cornerstores and other establishments as it is in Quebec – a movement which is facing severe resistance by the powers that be.

      As for SeekingAlpha, I’ve been reading on the site for some time now and put a few posts up to contribute something back to that community. Of course, if the posts are exclusive to their site as this one was, I can only provide an excerpt here with a link back to SA.

      Thanks for stopping in, Allan!
      – Ryan

  2. Well, this is an interesting one! Definitely can say I have never heard of it. Seems like it has a strong and loyal base in Canada, but I would be a bit more concerned with the int’l expansion opportunities. I don’t know much about the Canadian liquor market, but I know that the US market is supersaturated. That includes every local company here, as well as the multinationals like Brown-Forman and Diageo. Hundreds of brands for each type of liquor. It would be extremely hard for it to gain any significant market share, I would imagine. What competitive advantages does it have that would make int’l expansion fruitful?

    1. The company has already had success with their Wiser’s brand of whiskey in their U.S. efforts. That said, it has been costly to pump money behind the marketing machine to make this possible. One big plus the company has is that it has absolutely zero debt which allows them to finance these efforts without it straining their financial strength. Accordingly, I believe they will have staying power to see this through.

      You’ve probably seen some of their “Wiserhood” ads which feature modern men “being manly” in an oldschool kind of way. This ad has resonated with their target market. Supposing they can continue to leverage this campaign to even greater effect, that will be their edge. As you noted, market share is not easy to come by in this industry, so it really comes down to whether you trust Corby to effectively execute. Given the company’s long success history and strong financial base, I’m willing to bet on them.

      – Ryan

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