Chinese liquor brand Forty-Nine Union closes $92m from CMC Capital

Forty-Nine Union, a Chinese new retail brand aimed at sauce-flavoured liquor products, has raised 600 million yuan ($92 million) in a Series B round. 

The financing was exclusively from CMC Capital Partners, a Chinese private equity firm that specialises in media, technology and consumption, the investor announced on Friday.

The liquor brand will allocate the fresh proceeds to spruce up its production capacity, talent recruitment, digital intelligence, user-friendly experience, and brand marketing, it said.

Established by former Lenovo Group executive officer Chuanzong Zhang, the Tianjin-based Forty-Nine Union operates sauce-flavoured liquor business in China. With a network of 13 factories in Maotai Town, the birthplace of Chinese national liquor Maotai, the brand produces medium- to high-end liquor products.

Forty-Nine Union sells its products through omni-channel networks, including e-commerce platforms on WeChat’s mini programme and JD.com. It has also built over 1,500 distribution terminals, and it plans to increase this to 5,000 within five years.

In April this year, Forty-Nine Union secured undisclosed funding from the Chinese private equity firm Cathay Capital and Convivialité Ventures, the investment arm of French global alcoholic beverage giant Pernod Ricard. 

China’s liquor market has showed resilience amid COVID-19. Bloomberg reported in July last year that Chinese liquor giant Kweichow Moutai’s sales generated 22.6 billion yuan ($3.2 billion) and its net profit rose 13% in the first half of 2020. 

Sauce-flavoured liquor registered a turnover of 155 billion yuan ($24 billion) in 2020. 

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

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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.