Campari has broadened its spirits portfolio with the US$17.5m acquisition of Tequila firm Destiladora San Nicolas.

The deal reflects a US$17.5m price tag for San Nicolas shares, but comes with an extra $10m of debt, said the Italian wine and spirits group today (11 November).

The move expands Campari's presence in Mexico, a growing market for premium spirits, said the group, which today reported 1% rises in revenue and pre-tax profit for the first nine months of 2008.

It added that ths deal "allows the group to develop a fully fledged Tequila strategy in the US by including a premium price offer". Tequila, and particularly premium varieties, have shown strong growth in the US.

San Nicolas, which opened its distillery in 1998, sells around 50,000 nine-litre cases of its Tequila Espolón and Tequila San Nicolas brands in Mexico annually, Campari said.