Big Daddy’s Liquor, a Cayman landmark for 28 years, has been sold to Cayman Distributors Group, a division of the Dart Group, for an undisclosed amount.
In an exclusive interview with the Caymanian Compass, Matt Bishop, general manager for Cayman Distributors, said, “We have been negotiating for several months with Big Daddy’s owner Cleveland Dilbert and on Saturday, 9 October the deal was closed.”
Without revealing the price for the five Big Daddy liquor stores, he added that “The deal was attractive for all parties and everyone has walked away winners.”
The name chain of stores will keep the name Big Daddy’s, and all employees have been retained, according to Cayman Distributor Group officials.
Big Daddy’s was an all-Caymanian, family-owned business that had been serving the Cayman Islands since 1982, when the first store opened at the Seven Mile shops on West Bay Road.
“I am proud to say that, today, after all the years of dedication as a family, working together to build such a brand, we can – as a family – enjoy the fruits of our labour,” said Cleveland Dilbert, who established the business. He added that he was ready to retire. “At 66 years of age, as a father and as a Caymanian, there is nothing more that I can ask for in life than to see my family in a comfortable and secure position, especially in these troubled times.”
Cleveland Dilbert’s son Damien has been asked by Cayman Distributors to stay on as retail manager in order to further improve the high standards Big Daddy’s developed over the years.
“I was flattered and honoured that the CDG team expressed their interest in having me stay on to assist with the continuity of the business and to help them to inherit the winning attributes we have applied to our business that we have applied over the years,” he said.
Mr. Bishop said, “Big Daddy’s have always had a relationship with locals and have come to be known for their customer service, assortment and high value. These are the values that we want to maintain, so much so that our only focus right now is continuity of the business and not changing the model that has served the people of the Cayman Islands so well for so long.”
In addition to Cayman Distributors and Big Daddy’s, Dart Management also owns Blackbeard’s Rum Company. Mr. Bishop added that there is still plenty of competition.
“The liquor business is still very competitive and with Tortuga, Reflections, Jacques Scott, as well as several mom-and-pop operations, the market is vibrant and still gives the consumer a vast array of choice.”