The terms of Diageos three-year deal with Zacapas owners will continue after todays deadline

The terms of Diageo's three-year deal with Zacapa's owners will continue after today's deadline

Diageo's talks with the owner of the Zacapa rum brand are ongoing, just-drinks has learnt, despite the current partnership scheduled to end today (31 March).

Back in 2008, Diageo agreed a three-year global distribution and joint marketing deal with the Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala group for Zacapa. The agreement, which started on 1 April 2008, gave Diageo the option to buy a 50% equity stake in the brand, subject to performance criterion, at the end of the three years.

While Diageo confirmed to just-drinks at the end of last year that it had started discussions with Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala, just-drinks has learnt that the terms of the three-year agreement will remain in place after today's expiry, while the two sides continue their discussions on whether the option to purchase an equity stake is taken up.

A source close to the matter has told just-drinks this week that the talks are “proceeding positively”, with a resolution expected at some point before the end of June.

When contacted by just-drinks today, a spokesperson for Diageo said that the company is “talking about the future relationship” with Industrias Licoreras de Guatemala, but declined to give further details about what changes - if any - the talks cover.