FRANCE: Cognac consolidation continues with Pernod Ricard Martell talks

By | 8 February 2013

Martell is hosting the talks with Le Maine au Bois

Martell is hosting the talks with Le Maine au Bois

Pernod Ricard has announced that it has begun discussions to buy Cognac producer Le Maine au Bois.

The company said earlier this week that the “exclusive negotiations” with the company's owner, Mr Lasalle, are being led by its Martell Cognac division. La Maine au Bois “is involved in distillation, storage and trade of eaux-de-vie” in the Cognac region, Pernod said.

No further details were given.

The news marks the latest consolidation move by the multi-national spirits companies in France. Late last year, Remy Cointreau signed an agreement to acquire family-owned Larsen Cognac for an undisclosed sum.

In a note to clients, released yesterday (7 February), analysts at Kepler Research suggested that the multi-nationals are looking to up their production presence in Cognac. “Such an acquisition could enable Martell to increase its storage capacities and better integrate the Cognac manufacturing process," the analysts said. “Indeed, until now, Cognac houses' know-how has been on the aging of eaux-de-vie and their blending into Cognac.

"Such an acquisition could increase Martell's know-how in the distillation of eaux-de-vie.”

The analysts cited figures, sourced from societe.com, showing that, in the 12 months to the end of August, Le Maine au Bois posted sales of EUR16.6m (US$22.4m) and net profits of EUR1.57m.

Expert analysis

Global market review of brandy and Cognac – forecasts to 2016

At over 26,000 words, containing over 40 tables, IWSR's proprietary brand volumes and market forecasts, exclusive interviews with the top global brands, and including all the invaluable insight you have come to expect from the drinks publishing experts IWSR and just-drinks, this report is essential reading and provides fundamental market and brand data for your market planning and analysis work on this category.

Sectors: Mergers & acquisitions, Spirits

Companies: Pernod, Martell, Ricard, Cointreau, Remy

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