The pandemic and the closure of the restaurant stopped the expansion plans of Destil·leries del Maresme Brands (DMB), a family company with almost 150 years of history dedicated to the production of spirits. But, instead of retreating, the Arenys de Munt company took the opportunity to define projects and develop new products that have already borne fruit. “We did not sit still, we wanted to be prepared for the reopening of the market,” highlights Jordi Boada, partner of the company along with the brothers Marta and Antoni Soler and Joan Cuadrench.
This improvement process has raised its turnover from 20 million euros in 2019 to 31 million last year, 55% in four years – in 2020, as a result of the covid crisis, they dropped to 18 million. For this year, they anticipate sales of 34 million euros. The increase in income does not come from an increase in prices, Boada emphasizes, but from volume. “We have doubled the production shift and increased the workforce from 35 permanent workers to 44, plus temporary workers during the Christmas and summer peaks, to take on the increase in demand,” he says. The profit margin, however, has suffered in the last year due to the increase in production costs. “Everything has become more expensive, alcohol, glass, energy... so profits have not grown at the same rate as sales,” he explains.
The diversification of channels and markets has been key to its growth. Before the pandemic, 70% of DMB's income came from food distribution and 30% from hospitality. This proportion has been rebalanced and now national distribution contributes 30% of turnover, the hospitality channel in Spain another 25% and exports 45%. The company produces a wide range of products –gin, brandy, rum, tequila, vodka...–, with references that cover the entire range of qualities, both with its own brand and for white label distribution. The latter, says Boada, has grown at a great rate since the pandemic. “We are strong here, we work for large supermarket chains and the consumer increasingly appreciates this product,” he adds.
As for markets, they are present in a large part of Europe, China, Japan and Cuba, and they are finalizing their arrival in the United States (New York and Miami) and the United Kingdom this year with tequila creams, one of the products they have launched. recently.
This exercise they hope to consolidate the growth, which they have had to pay for "with their lungs." “SMEs need more facilities to access financing,” reflects Boada.