POLAND: Pernod sole bidder for Wyborowa distillery
Pernod Ricard is now the sole bidder for Polmos Poznan, the Polish distillery that produces the country's leading export vodka Wyborowa.
Pernod Ricard chairman, Patrick Ricard told just-drinks.com that the French drinks group had become the only official party in talks with the Polish government over Poznan as of Thursday.
It had been thought that the Dutch company Royal Bols Distilleries and a consortium between German spirits group Eckes and Swedish monopoly Vin&Sprit would mount a challenge to Pernod's bid.
Ricard also confirmed that Pernod would be buying the remaining shares it doesn't own in Agros, its Polish food and liquor exporter. Agros is at present in a battle with the Polish government over the export rights to the country's vodkas.
Agros holds those rights but Polish authorities are trying to hand them back to the Polmoses that produce the brands to increase the value of the distilleries as they are privatised.
Ricard said: "Today Agros owns those brands and was privatised owning them. You cannot sell a product twice."
However it is thought Pernod Ricard may be ready to end its ongoing vodka trademark dispute with the Polish state treasury, on condition it takes full control of Polmos Poznan.
And Ricard said on Friday: "I think we will find an agreement. If we have Wyborowa it will solve a big part of the problem. After all we cannot market all the brands. We could sell them back to the Polmoses or find some agreement."
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