Chinese alcohol distributor Baoyun bags over $94m led by Country Garden VC

Baijiu liquor in Zunyi, Guizhou Province, China. Photographer: Nelson Ching/Bloomberg

Baoyun Group, a distributor of wines and whiskies in China, has raked in 600 million yuan ($94 million) in a Series A round of financing led by Country Garden Venture Capital, the investment arm of Chinese property developer Country Garden.

The funding attracted a new investor, Being Capital, while existing investors Matrix Partners China, and Dayone Capital, re-upped in the round the company said in a statement.

Baoyun Group, which was set up in May last year, has so far secured nearly 1 billion yuan ($157 million) in its rounds of financing — angel, pre-A, pre-A+, Series A. Its backers include state-backed CICC Capital, internet investment firm Crystal Stream, and Foho Investment.

With the fresh proceeds, Baoyun aims to develop its innovative pipeline products and extend its brick-and-mortar stores, as well as facilitate product lines in partnership with alcohol brands. 

With headquarters in Northern China’s Tianjin city, Baoyun runs as an integrated platform offering alcohol products, with liquors such as Wuliangye and Maotai at the core. Aside from operating as a distributor, Baoyun has also launched its proprietary brand through online and offline channels.

“We are positive toward Chinese emerging brands involved in consumption. Being a much sought-after sector, we will continue to bet on liquors,” said Country Garden Venture Capital managing director Silong Li.

Chinese investors covet the liquor sector. Fosun International was seeking to buy a 70% stake in liquor and spirits maker Sichuan Tuopai Shede Group for 4.53 billion yuan ($694 million) late last year, while Fosun’s subsidiary Shanghai Yuyuan Tourist Mart also planned to pick up a 30%% stake in Jinhui Liquor earlier in July 2020. 

Additionally, tech giant Tencent had invested an additional $80 million in online liquor retailer Yijiupi in 2019. In 2018, Tencent had joined hands with Meituan Dianping, China Everbright, and Source Code Capital ploughing $200 million funding in Yijiupi. 

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

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  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.