US: Fortune Brands seals Cruzan rum deal

By | 1 October 2008

Fortune Brands has completed its deal to buy Cruzan rum from Pernod Ricard, as the French wine and spirits giant officially exits the Maxxium venture.

Fortune said today (1 October) that the completed deal for Cruzan gave it "an excellent position in the attractive premium rum segment".

The US group has also picked up a US$230m payment from Pernod Ricard, as compensation for Pernod's exit from the Maxxium Worldwide distribution venture, also effective from today.

Fortune, which remains part of Maxxium via its Beam Global Spirits & Wine business, paid $100m for Cruzan, leaving it with $130m of pre-tax proceeds from the deals.

"As the payment from Pernod more than offsets the loss of the remaining cost synergies from the joint venture," said Bruce Carbonari, CEO of Fortune and who also begins life as the group's new chairman from today.

"We're being well compensated. At the same time, we see significant benefits to owning and developing a high-performance spirits sales force in the U.S. that will be sharply focused solely on our own brands."

Cruzan had worldwide net sales of approximately $50m in 2007 on volume of around 750,000 cases, said Fortune, which also owns Sauza Tequila, Jim Beam and Courvoisier. It claimed that Cruzan was the fastest growing rum brand in the US, where it recorded a double-digit sales rise last year.

"Because Cruzan is already sold in the US by the joint venture sales force being transitioned into Beam Global, the company anticipates a smooth integration of the brand into its portfolio," Fortune added.

Fortune's Beam Global business will form a new distribution alliance with The Edrington Group from April 2009. The move follows the exit of Pernod from Maxxium and the planned exit of another partner, Rémy Cointreau, at the end of next March.

Sectors: Spirits

Companies: Pernod, Fortune Brands, Maxxium, Ricard, Beam Global, The Edrington Group, Cointreau

There are currently no comments on this article

Be the first to comment on this article

Related articles

CHINA: Pernod Ricard appoints Corby CEO as China head

Pernod Ricard has appointed Corby Distilleries chairman and CEO Con Constandis to head up its China business.

US: Foster's appoints Pernod Ricard wine chief

Foster's has appointed Pernod Ricard USA's general manager for wine and Champagne, Stephen Brauer, as its new managing director of Foster's Americas.

ASIA: Edrington Group to establish sales, distribution teams

The Edrington Group has announced plans to create two separate sales and distribution teams for South Korea and Taiwan, as part of the Scotch whisky firm's role in the reorganisation of the Maxxium venture.

just-drinks tagline

Not a member? Join here

Decrease font sizeDecrease font sizeDecrease font size Increase font sizeIncrease font sizeIncrease font size Comment on this article Email this to a friend Print this page