KEO (company)

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KEO (Κυπριακή Εταιρία Οίνων)
Private, LLC
Industry Food
Founded 1927
Headquarters Limassol, Cyprus
Area served
Cyprus
Key people
Kostas Koutsou
CEO
Products Beverages
Revenue 62,969,439 (2004)
Number of employees
420
Subsidiaries Etien Wines Spirits & Tobacco Ltd
KEO (UK) Ltd
Sun Island Canning Ltd
ΚΕΟ Distilling Ltd
Website http://www.keogroup.com/

KEO plc Greek: Κυπριακή Εταιρία Οίνων, the Greek abbreviation for Cyprus Wine Company, is a European beverage company based on the island of Cyprus. It was formed in 1927 and it represents one of the largest industrial employers on the island with more than 90 brands in its portfolio. Its shares are traded on the Cyprus Stock Exchange.[1][2]

History[edit]

KEO is public limited company was formed in 1927. It is a member of the Hellenic Mining Group whose varied interests in mining, cement production, consumer goods and banking make it the largest industrial group in Cyprus.[3] Reflecting its name, it started off as a company producing wine in the Limassol district. In 1951 it ventured into beer production by importing expertise from Czechoslovakia. Its product range has since expanded to include dessert wines (e.g. Commandaria), bottled water, brandy, spirits (including zivania), juices and canned food. Such is KEO's presence on the island that they have become a household name both with locals and the millions of annual tourists. The company is also an active participant at the annual Limassol wine festival. KEO’s growth and its rise to the eminent position as the island's leading wine making and brewing company was attributed to the high quality and strong household brand names. The company, till today, markets a wide variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic products locally and in over thirty countries worldwide. Following Cyprus’ accession to the European Union in 2004, KEO expanded its operations on continental Europe. Its shares are listed on the Cyprus Stock Exchange.[4]

Keo delivery truck

Divisions[edit]

KEO operates six trading divisions that include:

  • Beer
  • Wines
  • Spirits
  • Water
  • Juices & Soft drinks
  • Canned Food

Its portfolio comprises both local and international brands.

Wine Production[edit]

KEO operates four different wineries across four different vineyards - situated at an altitude of approximately 1,000 meters above sea level.

Topographic map of Cyprus. Troodos Mountains

Its wineries are among the first to be built on the island. All four wineries are in close proximity to the vineyards where research is carried out in an effort to increase and safeguard the varieties of grapes, selecting those that will yield the best quality of wine when grown under the local climate. KEO has historically experimented with varieties and cultivation methods whilst it has invested a great deal of resources into rediscovering Cyprus indigenous grape varieties of Mavro and Xynisteri, many of which date back to the classical times, a period when the Cypriot wine reflected the island’s heritage.[5]

KEO beer[edit]

Production of KEO Beer -a Pilsner type Lager Beer- started early in 1951. The original brewery had a small production capacity of about 300,000 gallons annually. In order to meet the ever-increasing demand, the company has carried out substantial extensions to the plant and the equipment now being the most up-to-date machinery in the brewing industry. The brewery is currently capable of producing over 30,000 hectoliters of beer monthly.[6] Keo beer was awarded a Gold Medal by the Brewing Industry International Awards.[7] In 2015 KEO Light won “Best New Product” award from the IN Business Magazine. The winners were chosen by public voting and a special committee.[8][9]

KEO delivery city car in Limassol, Cyprus.

Juice Production[edit]

SWS and Sun Island are among the island’s leading fruit juice producers. Their range of products and activities extends from fruit juices to canned fruit and vegetable. Similar with KEO wineries, the two companies cultivate their own citrus plantations in addition to absorbing a great amount of local fruits produced.

Sponsorship[edit]

In 2016, KEO (beer) announced the sponsorship of the Cyprus national football team. KEO will support the team throughout its efforts in the qualifying stages of the World Cup 2018. KEO’s collaboration with the Cyprus Football Association aims to strengthen and unify the fans of the sport and all those honoring the island state internationally.[10]

Controversy[edit]

In 2010 the appearance of KEO beer in an America pornographic film sparked strong reactions by the largest shareholders (20%), the Orthodox Church of Cyprus.[11]

References[edit]