Collapsed non-alc brand Sans Drinks sold to Just Wines

Collapsed non-alc brand Sans Drinks sold to Just Wines

Sans Drinks founder Irene Falcone.

Non-alcoholic drinks specialty store Sans Drinks has been rescued after voluntary administrators managed to sell the business and assets to one of Australia's leading online wine retailers, Just Wines.

As part of a Deed of Company Arrangement (DOCA) proposal that was accepted at a second creditors' meeting this week, all secured and employee creditors are likely to be paid in full, with unsecured creditors set to receive an estimated 48 cents in the dollar.

Payments are set to be made over the next three months, and it has also been revealed that Sans Drinks founder Irene Falcone will continue to participate in the business in marketing and strategy, in addition to continuing to nurture and build the Sans Drinks community.

"That’s a real passion for me,” she says.

"The decision to enter into the VA (voluntary administration) was a difficult one, and I’m incredibly grateful to the team at Jirsch Sutherland, who really guided me every step of the way.

"I’m thrilled that Sans Drinks is part of the Just Wines family and I’m looking forward to the next chapter for Sans Drinks."

Falcone started the business in 2020, three years after another company she founded Nourished Life was sold to BWX (ASX: BWX) for $20 million.

Sans Drinks

 

Jirsch Sutherland partner and voluntary administrator Andrew Spring calls the result “a great example of the benefit of voluntary administration as a business rescue process”.

"The VA process moves quickly, which enables administrators to focus on the best solution to preserve value for creditors, which is the case with Sans Drinks," says Spring.

"As an independent party, an administrator can come in and assess the business and determine the best path out. It takes the pressure off the directors and gives the business the best chance of survival.

"With Sans Drinks, the VA has resulted in the strengthening of the business through a trade sale and provided for a significantly improved outcome for all creditors, as opposed to if the business had been liquidated."

Just Wines founder Nitesh Bhatia describes the acquired business as an excellent addition to the Just Wines Platform.

"There are great synergies between the two brands and we’re looking forward to working with Irene to take Sans Drinks to the next level," Bhatia says.

"This is a great fit: Irene has vast experience in marketing and promotion, and Just Wines has a strong track record in administration, operations, and managing the supply chain.

"And as the non-alcoholic sector is a real growth area, this will enable Sans Drinks, which is already the number one retailer in this segment, to grow at a much faster pace. We’re looking forward to advising the customers of both brands about this exciting development."

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