Jan Becher – Karlovarská Becherovka, a. s. is a company with Czech roots and a global presence. It was established in 1807 by the famous Becher family based in Karlovy Vary and its main business today is the production and sale of premium alcoholic drinks. In 1997 the company became a part of the Pernod Ricard Group, one of the largest producers of spirits and wines in the world.
The flagship of our company is Becherovka Original, which celebrated its 200th anniversary in 2007 and today is a world-famous herbal liqueur exported to more than 40 countries worldwide. Apart from the main brand Becherovka Original, we also produce Cordial premium liqueur and KV 14 aperitif at our plant in Karlovy Vary. Our production portfolio was expanded with Lemond liqueur in 2008.
In addition to its own production of herbal liqueurs and alcoholic drinks, the Jan Becher – Karlovarská Becherovka distributes more than 40 international alcohol brands of the Pernod Ricard Group on the Czech market. They include for example Ballantine´s, Jameson, Havana Club, Beefeater, Absolut, Chivas Regal, Martell, Olmeca, Malibu, Jacob´s Creek, and other well-known premium brands.
History of the Company
The history of Becherovka dates back to the beginning of the 19th century. Present at the birth of the liqueur was the chemist Josef Vitus Becher. For several years, he had focussed on developing bitters based on a formula that his friend dr. Christian Frobrig from England had given to him. In 1807, he finally started selling a herbal liqueur which had an unmistakable aroma and taste.
Other members of the Becher family also contributed to the company’s development and the fame of Becherovka Original. The most outstanding among them was Jan Becher, who was at the head of the company for nearly 40 years and his signature has adorned the Becherovka bottle right up to the present day. Thanks to his extraordinary business skills, he is considered to be the true founder of the company. In 1867, he had a modern factory built on the site where the Jan Becher Museum and the Becherplatz tourist centre of Karlovy Vary are located today.
Under family management, Becherovka Original became an iconic Czech product known throughout the world. It managed to overcome all of the obstacles that it had to face in the period after nationalization in 1945 and it was equally successful in coping with the period of normalization and communist rule. Paradoxically, this was enabled particularly through introducing the production of non-alcoholic drinks.
The recent history of Becherovka Original follows up the success of the Becher family when in 1997 the company was privatised and subsequently acquired by the Pernod Ricard Group.