Fever-Tree founders land a further £100m payday after selling shares

(qlmbusinessnews.com via telegraph.co.uk – – Tue, 7th Aug 2018) London, Uk – –

The founders of Fever-Tree are toasting a £103.5m payday, after confirming the sell-off of another tranche of shares in the mixer maker.

Charles Rolls, non-executive deputy chairman, sold two million shares, while Tim Warrillow, chief executive, sold one million shares, leaving them will stakes of 7.1pc and 4.7pc respectively.

The shares were sold at a price of £34.50, landing Mr Rolls £69m and Mr Warrillow £34.5m.

The two men decided to exercise options over 275,820 shares each at a price of 134p per share, in order to source some of the shares being sold in the placing, meaning they will pay out around £370,000 each.

Mr Rolls and Mr Warrillow remain the fourth and eighth largest shareholders in Fever-Tree.

Shares in the company fell 4.2pc to £35.35 in early trade on Tuesday.

Initially, Mr Rolls and Mr Warrillow said they planned to sell off a total of two million shares.

During previous placings, the number of shares sold has been vastly different to the number originally intended, having almost doubled twice, due to significant demand for the stock.

This has meant the pair's holdings in Fever-Tree have notably shrunk. Since the end of 2015 to Monday night, prior to the most recent placing, Mr Rolls has sold just under 10 million shares and Mr Warrillow 2.5 million.

Mr Warrillow told The Daily Telegraph last year that he had sold down his stake as “you have to look at these things depending on the situation”.

The new share sales come as Fever-Tree's growth shows no sign of letting up. The company two weeks ago revealed its revenues had soared 45pc to £104m in the first half of 2018, driving profit 36pc higher.

Fever-Tree said it was continuing to benefit from the “well-established ‘premiumisation’ trend across the wider beverage sector as well as the movement to long mixed drinks”.

The positive results are just the latest in a string of upbeat updates from Fever-Tree, lifting shares 61pc in the year-to-date.

They have increased in price pretty much consistently since Fever-Tree floated in 2014, and shares now trade more than 2,600pc higher than Fever Tree's 134p initial public offering price.

Fever-Tree was the top mixer brand in shops last year, the bulk of its sales coming from tonic water.

However, it has recently branched out to offer mixers which could go with “dark spirits” such as dark rum and whiskey and, earlier this year, signed a deal with North America's largest wine and spirits distribution company, Southern Glazer's Wine and Spirits.

By Hannah Boland Sophie Christie