United Spirits has confirmed that it is in talks with Diageo over a possible partnership in India.

The confirmation, made today (14 November) by company president, Vijay Rekhi, comes after press speculation in the country earlier this week suggested that Diageo may buy a stake in UB.

"We have begun an exploratory dialogue with Diageo to identify partnership opportunities," Rekhi said at the IndSpirit conference in Mumbai. "We have entered into exclusive discussions with Diageo for a limited period."

Rekhi declined to comment further on the talks, with Diageo's managing director in India, Adil Asif, also declining to expand.

Press speculation in India earlier this week has claimed that Diageo is considering taking a 15% stake in United Spirits. A spokesperson for Diageo told just-drinks yesterday that the company "is reviewing a possible collaboration" with United Spirits.

"There is no certainty at this stage that these talks will result in a transaction," the spokesperson added.

Analaysts have previously told just-drinks that a deal would make sense for Diageo.