Fior Brands, the UK distribution joint venture set up by Gruppo Campari and Morrison Bowmore Distillers, is to close and move its portfolio to independent distributor Cellar Trends.

Brands including Campari, Cinzano, Skyy vodka and Bowmore single malt Scotch whisky are affected by the agreement, which comes into force on 16 July. Marnier-Lapostolle, whose Grand Marnier brand is also distributed by Fior, is still completing contract negotiations with Cellar Trends.

Stirling-based Fior Brands was set up in 2002, but Morrison Bowmore chief executive Mike Keiller admitted that the business had never acquired the scale necessary to be competitive, struggling to attract other partners or third-party brands.

Cellar Trends, which had distributed Grey Goose vodka in the UK prior to its acquisition by Bacardi, has a strong on-trade presence with brands like Luxardo sambuca and Jägermeister.

MD and joint owner Martin Watts said the deal added about one-third to the company's turnover. He said the new arrangement offered economies of scale, leading to greater investment in marketing behind the ex-Fior brands.

Keiller described Cellar Trends as "unproven" in the dark spirits arena, but said: "We like their philosophy. They're people we believe we will be able to work closely with."