China’s Tsingtao Beer awards UK license to LEC Beverages for the sale and distribution of its brand in partnership with In Good Company

LEC Beverages Group and In Good Company have today announced that they will collaborate in a joint venture to manage the UK licensing, sales and distribution of Tsingtao Beer, the flagship brew from China’s premium brewer, Tsingtao Brewery Co. Ltd.

Previously managed by C&C Group, Tsingtao has newly awarded its UK business to LEC Beverages Group, which in turn has entered into a joint venture with In Good Company to help distribute and sell the brand.

LEC Beverages Group is a boutique firm specialising in the management, progression, and distribution of top-tier drinks brands. With a strategic, long-term vision for distributing drinks in the UK, the team comprises highly decorated professionals with bespoke UK contacts and a strong network for both on-trade and off-trade distribution.

In August 2022, In Good Company acquired Fourpure and Magic Rock, bringing the brands back into British ownership. Since then, the business has made a number of strategic changes which have buoyed profitability and helped it grow at pace. It’s current portfolio of brands now includes the exclusive license for non-alcoholic craft beer brand Big Drop, and non-exclusive sales of craft brand People’s Captain, which is known for its foundation raising proceeds for UK mental health initiatives.

Tsingtao Beer, which is a well-hopped standard pale lager (4.7% ABV), will continue to be produced at Tsingtao Brewery Co’s facility in Qingdao, China, before being shipped to the UK to provide a truly authentic Chinese beer. In terms of Tsingtao Beer’s current distribution, it is available in M&S, as well as having a strong foothold across wholesale and hospitality, proving particularly popular at Chinese restaurants.

Founded in 1903, Tsingtao Brewery Company Limited is headquartered in Qingdao, the People’s Republic of China. It is publicly listed both on the Hong Kong and Shanghai Stock exchanges, and is the manufacturer, marketer and distributor of flagship beer brand Tsingtao as well as dozens of other regional brands. It is the best-known Chinese beer internationally with sales and distribution covering 100+ countries worldwide and is the No.1 imported Chinese beer brand in the U.K.

Commenting on the news, Jack Perry, Chairman of LEC Beverages, said: “We’re thrilled to be taking on responsibility for Tsingtao’s licensing, sales and distribution in the UK. We have a long-standing history of developing and nurturing premium imported brands in the UK market and we know how important capturing a brand’s authentic heritage is as part of delivering a smart route to market strategy. We’re excited to bring our expertise in this area to Tsingtao and look forward to collaborating with In Good Company for the first time.”

In Good Company’s CEO Steve Cox, said: “We’re really excited about this partnership with LEC Beverages and Tsingtao, and what it means for the further growth of the business. While our heritage and DNA has been and will always be in craft beer, thanks to the phenomenal breadth of expertise in our team, we have capabilities well beyond this and are keen to capitalise on this as the business evolves. We’re also really delighted to be working in partnership with LEC Beverages, who have a huge amount of industry expertise.”

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