The UB Group (United Breweries) Group is a multi-faceted conglomerate with business interests in Beverage Alcohol, Pharmaceuticals, Media, International Trading, Aviation, Fertilizer, Research & Development, and Infrastructure Development.
The UB Group was founded by a Scottish gentleman Thomas Leishman in
1915. The company used to manufacture beer at that time and took its
initial lessons in manufacturing beer from South Indian based British
breweries. In August 1947, Vittal Mallya became the company's first
Indian director. A year later he became the Chairman of the Group.
United Breweries came into limelight by manufacturing bulk beer for the
British troops, which was transported in huge barrels. In 1950s and 60s,
the group expanded rapidly and made several acquisitions. McDowell was
added as one of the Group subsidiaries. This helped UB Group to venture
into wines and spirits business. Kingfisher, the Group's most visible
and profitable brand, made its entry in the sixties. Thereafter, the
Group moved into agro-based industries and medicines when it acquired
Kissan Products and formed a long-term relationship with Hoechst AG of
Germany to promote Aventis Pharma.
After Vittal Mallya's death in 1983, his son Vijay Mallya assumed the
mantle of the group. Vijay Mallya inducted professional management and
consolidating the Group into individual operating divisions. In 1988, UB
Group acquired the global Berger Paints Group with operating companies
across four continents. The paints business was divested for significant
value in 1996. After India adopted economic liberalization in 1991, the
UB Group decided to retain interests in only those businesses that were
globally competitive and did not depend upon fiscal tariff protection.
Today, UB Group is the third largest manufacturer of Spirits products in
the world. In 2005, the Group entered aviation sector with the launch of
Kingfisher Airlines Limited. With in a short time the airlines has
captured an impressive market share and has established a niche identity
Business Interests of UB Group:
Beverage Alcohol: The UB Group is 3rd largest spirits marketer
in the world, with overall sales of 60 million cases. The company offers
140 brands at varying price points. Some of the famous brands of the UB
Group are: Bagpiper Whisky, McDowell's No.1 Whisky, Director's Special
Whisky, McDowell's No.1 Brandy and McDowell's Celebration Rum.
Pharmaceuticals: The group's company Aventis Pharma Limited is
the second largest pharmaceutical multinational in India. It develops
and markets branded prescription drugs and vaccines.
Media: The UB Group also has a shareholding in Asian Age
Holdings Ltd, the company that owns and manages daily newspaper, The
International Trading: The Group's company UB Global Limited is
a recognized export house engaged in the export of Beer, Spirits,
Leather Footwear and Processed Foods. The Company also exports
Pharmaceutical Products and customized perfumeries.
Fertilizer: Mangalore Chemicals & Fertilizers Limited is
under UB Group's management. It has a manufacturing capacity of 2,17,
800 MT of Ammonia and 3,80,000 MT of Urea.
Research & Development: Vittal Mallya Scientific Research
Foundation (VMSRF) was established in 1987 with the objective of
developing newer and novel technologies that will have substantial
application in industry and health care. The foundation is it is
recognized by the Departments of Scientific & Industrial Research
(DSIR), Dept. of Biotechnology (DBT), Council for Scientific and
Industrial Research (CSIR) and the Ministry of Finance, Govt. of India.
Aviation: UB Group entered aviation sector in 2005 with the
launch of Kingfisher Airlines Limited. Kingfisher Airlines has captured
an impressive market share and has established a niche identity for
itself. The airlines recently acquired 25% stake in Deccan Airlines.
Note: The above information was last updated on 21-07-2007