Bacardi-Martini has clinched the distribution rights to Finlandia vodka in the UK from the beginning of next year, a contract currently held by Maxxium.

The announcement is not a surprise given the close relationship between Finlandia's part owner Brown-Forman and Bacardi. Brown-Forman will continue to market the brand in the UK under the new agreement.

Andrew Wilby, vice president for core markets at Brown-Forman said: "Bacardi-Martini's excellent distribution system and marketing expertise will be a great asset to the brand as Finlandia continues to develop in the market place."

John Beard, sales director for Bacardi-Martini in the UK said: "We are thrilled to have secured this prestigious agreement. It is of huge significance to us, at last giving Bacardi-Martini a full presence across all main spirits categories and underlining our vision of becoming one of the world's top three spirits companies."

Brown-Forman holds a 45% stake in Finlandia's parent company Finlandia Vodka Worldwide Ltd. (FVW). Original owner the Altia Group holds the remaining 55% stake.