Ireks GmbH,an international family-owned manufacturer of baking ingredients and brewing malts has reached an agreement on the purchase of the production facilities of Schweinfurt/Germany-based malt house Mälzerei Günther Schubert.
Due to the threat of insolvency and over-indebtedness, the almost 150-year-old malt house filed for bankruptcy in self-administration. Insolvency proceedings were opened at the district court of Schweinfurt, Germany, on July 15, 2022. (inside.beer, 21.7.2022)
The Ireks Group, headquartered in Kulmbach 110 km west of Schweinfurt, operates malt houses in Germany and Austria and holds a 25.8 percent stake in Kulmbacher Brauerei AG. According to its own statements, Ireks plans to take over the existing workforce and continue production at the Schweinfurt site.
In 2011, Ireks already purchased Schweinfurter Malzfabrik, another much bigger malthouse in the same village. For many years, the company has been pursuing a strategy of buying up smaller and sometimes ailing companies nearby in order to improve its own market position.
In the last few decades, the Unima and Meussdörffer malt factories in Kulmbach, the Stadlauer Malzfabrik (STAMAG) in Vienna, Austria, the Sulzbacher Malzfabrik in Sulzbach-Rosenberg and Schweinfurter Malzfabrik have been taken over, incorporated and partially shut down.The group currently produces malt at the German locations in Kulmbach, Sulzbach and Schweinfurt as well as in Vienna and Graz in Austria.
People close to the matter believe that the Günther Schubert malthouse will also be closed in the medium term, since it makes little sense to operate two malthouses in the same place.However, the currently aggravated situation in the malt market should guarantee continued operation of the malt house, at least for the near future.
However, customers of the Günther Schubert malthouse may end up empty-handed, since Ireks only took over the production facilities and employees but not the company with all ongoing malt contracts. New malt contracts are currently being traded at least double the price of last year.