Shockwave in the beer world in Quebec: Triani is full of debt and is reorganizing

Five Quebec microbreweries have been waiting for months to receive the three to five million dollars owed to them by their distributor Transbroue. The latter announced the end of its sales and representation activities on Monday morning.

• Also read: Triani owes him $1.2 million, he slams the door

Its owner – the Triani Group – states in a press release that it wants to “focus exclusively on sales”.

Le Journal revealed on Saturday that Transbroue has not paid its suppliers – the breweries – since the summer.

Pol Brisset in Joliette is waiting for a check for $1.2 million. The contract between his brewery L’Alchimiste and Transbroue has been broken since November 8th.

Triani wines

Pol Brisset has just slammed the door on his distributor Transbroue, which has stopped paying him and owes him $1.2 million. Photo provided by Pol Brisset

Brasserie Générale is seeking $154,225 from the company in a lawsuit and Brasserie À l’abri de la Tempête is seeking $141,403. Four others are asking for an additional $339,372.

Even the ex-Dragon Nicolas Duvernois knows the song. The creator of Pur Vodka doesn’t think he’ll see the more than $1 million owed to him by the couple behind Triani, who have owned Transbroue for 15 months.

Tristan Bourgeois Cousineau, 32, and Joannie Couture, 33, have a warlike reputation in the beer world.

They are canceling their new acquisition, they pleaded on Monday, because of the “difficulties of Transbroue” and the “difficult economic situation”.

Beer sales are declining, they complain.

At the time of the announcement, four microbreweries were under contract with the distributor: Shelton, 4 Origines, L’Espace public and MonsRegius.

The amount of Transbroue’s debts to them is currently unknown.

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“They don’t care about the world”

Transbroue called all employees together at 8 a.m. on Monday morning. According to a reliable source, Tristan Bourgeois Cousineau has stated, among other things, that he will soon make an offer to the unpaid partners.

Triani responded to the Journal article on Saturday with a letter titled “Being an Entrepreneur in the Age of Bullying and Misinformation.”

“I sincerely regret that companies have come to the point of washing their dirty laundry in public places, and even more […] through direct attacks on individuals. It is malicious and dishonest,” writes Joannie Couture.

All employees of the Triani Group – which includes Transbroue – received the letter on Saturday morning. The email also included the press release issued on Monday.

The couple isn’t the only one who expressed a heartfelt shout-out. A former Transbroue employee did the same.

“Since they arrived, they haven’t even paid out our bonuses that are in our contracts,” admits the man whose identity we have confirmed.

Tristan and Joannie, as they are called, are ruining Transbroue, he writes.

“All this in less than a year! “Frustration is at its peak,” says this member of the company’s old guard with disgust.

Regular at the courthouse…

With Transbroue, Triani also bought the Glutenberg Group in 2022 – the Glutenberg, Oshlag and Vox Populi breweries.

The Caisse de dépôt et place du Québec had provided $2.5 million for 20% of the group in 2017, valuing David Cayer and Julien Niquet’s company at $12 million.

At the time of the sale, Triani paid the Caisse ruby ​​on the nail. The 50 small shareholders – including the two founders – did not receive everything: Triani still keeps a little more than a million dollars.

Since then, shareholders have been suing Triani. You will be sued in return for providing misleading information.

“They accuse us of leaving behind debts. They just didn’t do their checks. The best thing that can happen is that they go bankrupt,” claims a former Transbroue shareholder.

Tristan and Joannie are used to lawsuits; at least 20 SMEs have attacked them in court since 2019. In Saint-Eustache, René Huard has a lot to say on this subject.

“They are victims of EVERYONE. That’s too unfair,” says the owner of the Simple Malt brewery humorously, referring to Caliméro, the charming but unhappy little black girl.

Triani owes him $400,000, he pleads in a three-year-old lawsuit.

“Triani first filed a lawsuit against Simple Malt in 2020,” writes Joannie Couture in her letter against “bullying” and “misinformation.”

She ordered beer from Simple Malt in 2019, she said. René Huard would have taken his money without delivering the goods.

I owe you $3 million

“It would be so easy if it were true. That is simply wrong. I have thousands of documents that prove it,” the hop lover curses, almost choking on the accusation.

Joannie Couture was sad, she wrote in her Saturday letter. She doesn’t move: the media and her ex-partners are there.

“What saddens me most is how commonplace misinformation has become. We throw numbers and accusations everywhere without any shame and without even bothering to check the source,” laments the company director.

Triani says nothing in his press release about the exact topic of his breweries Glutenberg, Oshlag and Vox Populi and Les 2 Frères, as well as his alcoholic drinks Baron, Octane and Mojo.

“Transbroue’s most important customer remains Triani for the representation and distribution of its alcoholic products. Transbroue is also more than $3 million in debt to Triani to date,” the couple wrote.

Earnings from all of the couple’s known businesses are estimated to be more than $20 million a year.

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