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.