Florijnz praises itself for realizing sustainable transactions that keep all parties feeling good in the long run. One of these transactions is Verbunt Wijnkopers. 5 years after guiding their merger with Verlinden, we asked how they look back on the process.
How is Verbunt Wijnkopers doing?
About five years ago your (family) company Verlinden became part of Verbunt. Since then called Verbunt Verlinden (www.verbuntverlinden.nl). Florijnz supervised this merger from A to Z. We are of course curious to know how the situation is now five years later. Whether the expectations you had beforehand have actually been met or even exceeded.
What was your expectation of this joining of forces at the time?
The expectation of our merger was that we would get the 1 + 1 = 3 effect due to complementary properties of both companies. Because the integration was somewhat slower and because of Corona, that effect did not become well visible until 2022.
What has come out so far and what hasn't?
We would have liked to integrate more quickly but it took more time than expected. On the other hand, the sales growth that we managed to achieve in all the markets where we serve customers (to the Wine Specialty stores, the supermarkets and to the catering industry) makes up for a lot. This is the development we have bet on and it is now coming true.
A merger also means that employees and leadership must work together.
Can you tell how that is going now? For example, how the mutual cooperation is fulfilled?
For me personally, a lot has changed. I went from being an entrepreneur to being an employee, which feels totally different. Being responsible for turnover and margin gives much less pressure than being responsible for an entire company with employees. Nevertheless, I also like the energy that entrepreneurship gives me. I still feel like an entrepreneur but in paid employment.
How did you experience our cooperation during the merger process? Would you have seen things handled differently afterwards?
As far as I was concerned, the process with you guys went very well. I was well supported as the selling party. The buyer became my future employer and you responded well. So that at the start of the merger there were few or no uncertainties left and we could immediately start working together.
You were the4th generation entrepreneur within Wine Verlinden. Your father, you sometimes said, also agreed with this move.
What would you say to him now about the takeover?
I would like to tell him that I am proud that the Verlinden name is still in the market and that the wineries we work with, sometimes since 1948, know their way to the wine lover. We are still a household name in the market. The merger with Verbunt does nothing to change that. The sales growth we are now seeing has only strengthened our market position.
Florijnz Corporate Finance always aims for a sustainable transaction where all parties keep a good feeling on both short and long term. Wondering what we can do for your company, feel free to contact us.