The drinks giants Pernod Ricard and Diageo have today signed an agreement that marks the end of their year-long co-operation to restructure the Seagram spirits and wines business.

In a statement the two companies said: "The new agreement signals compliance with all the regulatory requirements which were outlined when Diageo and Pernod Ricard jointly acquired the Seagram spirits and wine business. This completes the disposal of all brands which were originally identified for onward sale, and the integration of agreed brands into Pernod Ricard and Diageo."

Patrick Ricard, chairman and chief executive officer of Pernod Ricard said: "The integration of the Seagram teams and brands has been particularly rapid and smooth."  He added, "This acquisition has enabled us to become one of the leading players globally, and to acquire key positions in the whisky sector with Chivas Regal and The Glenlivet, in the cognac sector with Martell and in the white spirits sector with Seagram's Gin in North America, Montilla rum in Brazil and Olmeca Tequila."

The acquisition od Seagram saw Pernod reinforcing its leading spirits position in continental Europe and Ireland, while the group has become the number two in Asia and Central and South America. The group now employs 13,000 people, more than 3,500 of whom joined from Seagram.

Diageo, meanwhile, now owns Captain Morgan, Crown Royal, Seagram's 7, Seagram's VO and Sterling Vineyards, and the super premium tequila brand Don Julio.

Speaking of the acquisition, Shaun Parker, director, Seagram transition
said: "The integration of Seagram's businesses and people into Diageo has been highly successful.

"The signing of the agreement today means that we will no longer work closely with Pernod Ricard in relation to the Seagram acquisition.  We will continue to be robust competitors, and only work together concerning agreed Seagram issues which cannot be concluded immediately."

Over 2000 Seagram employees made the move into the Diageo business.