`Grupo SOS Signs Distribution Deal in Japan for Bertolli Olive Oil


Grupo SOS Signs Distribution Deal in Japan for Bertolli Olive Oil

Aug. 2, 2010
Daniel Williams

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By Daniel Williams
Olive Oil Times Con­trib­u­tor | Report­ing from Barcelona

Span­ish Leader Grupo SOS Ini­ti­ates Opti­mistic Dis­tri­b­u­tion Deal for Bertolli Olive Oil with Japan­ese Importer

Grupo SOS of Spain has reached a dis­tri­b­u­tion agree­ment with Japan Euro­pea Trad­ing Com­pany (JET) to cre­ate a sales net­work spe­cial­iz­ing in dis­trib­ut­ing Mediter­ranean prod­ucts to prin­ci­pal cities through­out Japan. The agree­ment is based around the spe­cific sale of the Bertolli brand of olive oil and JET hopes to increase the pres­ence of this prod­uct in Japan­ese hotels and restau­rants.

To pro­mote the Bertolli olive oil brand, JET will host a num­ber of cook­ing courses in major Japan­ese cities. The mar­ket­ing project is designed to pop­u­lar­ize Mediter­ranean cui­sine of which olive oil is a ubiq­ui­tous ingre­di­ent.

Grupo SOS of Spain acquired the Bertolli olive oil busi­ness from Unilever, a Lon­don-based food pro­ducer, for £500 mil­lion in 2008 as part of its dis­posal of non-essen­tial busi­nesses. Despite this, Unilever still retains the Bertolli brand name for other prod­ucts includ­ing mar­garine, frozen meals, and pasta sauce.


At the moment, Bertolli already pos­sesses a respectable 5% mar­ket share in Japan, while the Grupo SOS’ com­plete set of olive oils holds a 12% share of the Japan­ese sec­tor through Bertolli, Car­bonell and Cara­pelli. Accord­ing to Grupo SOS, the future looks even more opti­mistic and the com­pany has fore­casted an addi­tional 5 per­cent mar­ket share increase in the next decade.

Each year, Japan imports some 30,000 tons of olive oil mak­ing it the num­ber one buyer of olive oil in Asia and the third-largest buyer world­wide.

Grupo SOS is a Span­ish com­pany in the food indus­try that brings together diverse lead­ing brands in the Span­ish and Euro­pean mar­kets. Its main prod­ucts are rice, olives and olive oil. Today it is the sec­ond largest Span­ish food busi­ness in annual sales (after Ebro Puleva). Grupo SOS is listed on the Lon­don Stock Exchange under the code SOS.

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