Global Brands has bought the specialist beer supplier Fullback Imports in a deal that reaffirms its commitment to the beer market. Question marks had hung over the VK Vodka Kick company’s future in beer after it ended its UK licensing agreements for the Chinese beer Tsingtao, Carib from Trinidad and the Estonia brand Viru in the last 12 months.

Further speculation was fuelled when Global’s beer brands director John Harley left at the start of 2008. The new acquisition means Fullback’s portfolio of Saku Kuld from Estonia, Zagorka from Bulgaria and Peerdeburg Blond from Belgium join the Global portfolio. Fullback founders Justin Horsman and Neil Robinson have moved to Global as trade marketing manager and senior national account manager respectively.

“The brands fit well with our distribution base and our expansion plans,” said chairman Steve Perez.