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“The acquisition of Bouchages Delage by Tapì group has created an alliance with the shared objective of going further, faster,” explains Christian Delage, CEO of the Cognac-based manufacturer specialized in closures for spirits. The family-owned company—founded by the owner’s grandmother in 1941—announced its sale to the Italian group in May. The Delage family now owns 10 % of  Tapì group. With a combined revenue of almost 80 million euros (2018 figures), the group is positioned to become “the world leader in stoppers,” according to Delage. So why did the company choose Tapì? “Tapì was the most compatible when it came to a merger: both companies are experts in stoppers for spirits, but Les Bouchages Delage originally specialized in cork, while Tapì focuses more on synthetic materials. Moreover, we’re primarily rooted in the premium market; Tapì has limited presence in France and we have work to do to boost our share in foreign markets,” adds Delage.

Indeed, Les Bouchages Delage is not shy about its international ambitions. The company’s export activity, led by Jean-Baptiste Delage (fourth-generation), represents around 20% of the company’s current revenue, a percentage the manufacturer aims to significantly increase. “Tapì has a strong international presence, and our clients—mostly large spirits groups—want us to have a stronger global presence. This alliance will enable us to hold our current position, to grow together, and to extend to other continents,” explains Delage.

In addition to its production in Italy, Tapì manufactures in Argentina and Mexico, where the group aqcuired Tapones Escobar in 2014, “the oldest Mexican closures business,” with a large portion of production dedicated to tequila, notes Roberto Casini, CEO of Tapì group. The group has been present in Argentina since 2017, where it has been gradually transferring its expertise mainly to service Pisco brands, a type of eau-de-vie from Peru and Chili. Argentina is now the group’s manufacturing center for all of South America.

Both companies have been active on the innovation front: in 2018 Les Bouchages Delage launched Primo Connect, the company’s first connected stopper to be industrially produced, and Tapì developed Abor, a collection made from distillation residue.

Alissa Demorest

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