UK: Pernod hints at spirits brands sale
Pernod Ricard has hinted it may sell off more spirits brands following its successful takeover of Absolut vodka owner Vin & Sprit.
Pernod chief executive Pierre Pringuet indicated today (24 July) that the group might be willing to listen to offers for some peripheral brands, but refused to elaborate on which ones. Speaking at the French firm's full-year results conference in London, Pringuet added there were "several companies which were possibly interested".
EU competition authorities, which last week cleared Pernod's EUR6.59bn (US$8.78bn) takeover of V&S, have already said that Pernod must sell certain brands owned by the Swedish group, including Star Gin, Lubuski Gin and Gronstedts Cognac. A further sell-off, which analysts speculate could include Plymouth Gin, would allow Pernod to concentrate resources on V&S' core brands.
Pringuet said the group also planned to have terminated its distribution deal for Stolichnaya vodka within a "maximum of six months", and possibly closer to two.
He refuted suggestions that a slowdown in western economies, and notably the US, was a threat to growth in premium spirits like Absolut vodka. Pernod's sales slipped 3% in its fourth quarter due to the weak dollar, although big spirits brands such as Martell, Jameson and Havana Club recorded double-digit growth for the full-year.
"We are not facing a collapsing market in the US," Pringuet said. "When I read the newspapers with their gloomy predictions about the economy, I wonder if I am living in this world." Emerging markets in Asia have yet to suffer from a similar slowdown and this may help to insulate Pernod as "a global company exposed to a global market", he added.
Pernod saw sales rise by 2.3% for the year to the end of June and predicted operating profit would rise by 13% in the coming 12 months.
Tax hikes have taken centre stage in discussions between the alcohol industry and several national and state governments around the world over the last year. Michelle Russell reports on a global trend...
January may be the time to look forward to the coming year but few in the drinks industry will be eyeing the coming year with relish. However, given the pessimistic tone of virtually every market and ...
The top ten stories published on just-drinks this week:...
Sweden-based distributor Nigab is to handle Foster's wine brands in the Nordic duty-free and travel retail sectors....
Nick Blair, wine director for Pernod Ricard in the UK, is to be the new chairman of the London International Wine Fair and its sister show, Distil....
Pernod Ricard has announced that Eric Benoist, current marketing head for Martell Perrier-Jouet, will replace Martin Riley as marketing director as Chivas Brothers....
Pernod Ricard has appointed Martin Riley, head of marketing for its Chivas Brothers division, as the group's new vice president of global marketing....
Russian Standard has said that its vodka will be distributed in Greece by Amvyx, the spirits distributor that this week severed ties with Pernod Ricard brands, including Absolut....
- Have spirits companies forgotten the mainstream?
- Does alcohol accelerate the onset of dementia?
- Pernod's mood darkens over India - Analysis
- Why Scotch must drop the 'malts good, blends bad'
- Ashwagandha - The next functional drinks trend?
- Moet Hennessy unaffected by LVMH Dior buy
- Diageo to cut 105 jobs in Scotland, 50 in Italy
- Distell acquires majority stake in Cruz Vodka
- Portman Group heads to Tesco for new chief exec
- William Grant names Europe & NA Travel Retail head
- Global Scotch insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Global Champagne and sparkling wine insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Battle of the Generations - The fight for iGen, Millennial, Gen X and Baby Boomer consumers
- Myanmar - ISA Country Report
- Global vodka insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends