Rémy Cointreau's US arm has signed a deal to distribute the portfolio of vodka producer Russian Standard across the Atlantic.

Rémy Cointreau USA will handle the entire Russian Standard vodka stable, including its flagship brand Imperia. The agreement deepens the working relationship between the two companies as Russian Standard's domestic distribution unit Roust already handles Rémy's spirits portfolio in Russia.

Roustam Tariko, chairman of Russian Standard Company, said yesterday (1 June): "We are pleased to be partnering with the Rémy Cointreau Group on a global scale. They are a premium brands company with a track record of excellence in the global spirits industry. We have developed a superb relationship in Russia, and now I look forward to expanding our business with them in the US."

Thomas F. Jensen, president and CEO of Rémy Cointreau USA, added: "American consumers are in love with authenticity, and Russian Standard represents the best and most authentic line of Russian vodkas, and a perfect fit for our portfolio of premium brands."

Russian Standard is in the middle of a dispute with Pernod Ricard after questioning the heritage of Pernod's Stolichnaya vodka. Russian Standard has claimed that Stolichnaya is not Russian at all, and is in fact made in Latvia.

Pernod, which attained the distribution rights to Stolichnaya last year after its takeover of Allied Domecq, has vowed to explore its legal position in the face of the allegations.

Rémy USA officials could not be reached for comment as just-drinks went to press.