Greek drinks firms join promo forces

Two Greek drinks companies, refreshments makers Loux Marlafekas and Eza (Hellenic Brewery of Atalanti), on Thursday announced their decision to join forces in the promotion sector.

The two firms launched their commercial partnership, which concerns the cooperation of their sales and exports departments, to make the most of their distribution networks. Through this cooperation Loux Marlafekas will be able to gain access to regions where it does not have a strong presence, but Eza does, and vice versa.

This cooperation is not restricted to domestic sales but will also apply to their export activity. The companies stressed that Loux and Eza will retain their independence and that the partnership will have no effect on their share composition.

Nevertheless it appears the cooperation will likely spread to other parts of the firms, such as their research and development departments, in order for them to launch a new, common product. “Once two firms have found common ground, it is natural that they should explore other possibilities for cooperation,” Yiannis Marlafekas, chairman and chief executive of Loux Marlafekas, told Kathimerini.

The creation of a common product would today be quite easy as Eza has extended its activity beyond brewing.

Having invested 5.5 million euros in a new production line, the company now also produces non-alcoholic malt-based beverages.

Last year was quite a good one for both firms. Loux enjoyed an annual turnover increase of about 2 million euros to reach 29 million, while its profits posted a spectacular rise, although the financial statement is yet to be released. Eza saw its pretax earnings climb from 770,000 euros in 2013 to 933,000 last year.

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