Diageo and Moët Hennessy announced today have decided to consolidate their respective brands with single distributors in certain key US states.

The move is an effort to create greater efficiencies across the US distribution system, and will be made between Diageo and Schieffelin & Somerset. Schieffelin & Somerset is a joint-venture between Diageo and Moët Hennessy.

"Ultimately, combining our brands with those of Moët Hennessy will create tremendous efficiencies in the US distribution system," said Paul Walsh, CEO of Diageo.  "Creating efficiencies in our US route-to-market will deliver value not only to our brands and our consumers, but to our shareholders as well."

Christophe Navarre, president and CEO of Moët Hennessy said: "This realignment will support our organic growth.  It will allow both of our companies to be more responsive to consumer desires and retailer needs and will accelerate the development of our brands in the US."

Brands to be distributed under these arrangements include Smirnoff, Baileys, Captain Morgan, Cuervo, Crown Royal, Seagram's 7 Crown, Beaulieu Vineyard and Sterling Vineyards Wines, Johnnie Walker Scotch Whisky, Tanqueray, J&B, Moët & Chandon, Dom Pérignon, Hennessy, Domaine Chandon, Grand Marnier and Ruffino Wines.

The new arrangements will create a dedicated sales team in each distributor for Diageo and Schieffelin & Somerset brands. "These sales teams will help establish a platform for greater organic growth for the brands, as well as allow Diageo and Schieffelin & Somerset to work more closely with distributors to promote the responsible consumption of their products," Diageo said in a statement.

Peerless Importers, Inc. and its upstate affiliate, Colony Liquors and Wine Distributors, have won the contract as the distributor in New York State.  Southern Wine & Spirits of America, Inc. is selected as the preferred distributor in Florida, California, Hawaii and Kentucky. These five states represent nearly 30% of the volume population of the distilled spirits industry in the US.