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FRANCE/SPAIN: Pernod Ricard still confident in Havana Club row

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Pernod Ricard has said it "remains confident" despite a decision by Spain's Supreme Court to hear the company's row with Bacardi over Havana Club.

The French company, which jointly owns the Havana Club Cuban rum brand with state-owned Cuba Ron, was responding to news late last week that the Spanish Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal from Bacardi over the country's ruling in favour of Pernod in 2007.

"The decision of the Supreme Court merely reflects that the required formalities to accept reviewing the appeal have been met, without having analysed and considered at this stage any of the merits of the case," a spokesperson for Pernod said today (27 July).

"Pernod Ricard remains confident that the Spanish Supreme Court will confirm the judgements of both the First Instance Court and the Madrid Provincial Court, whereby the claims of Bacardi and members of the Arechabala family have been entirely rejected."

Bacardi, which holds the trademark rights to Havana Club in the US, has long claimed that the brand and associated assets were illegally confiscated from its original owners - the Arechabala family - by the Cuban Government during the revolution in the country. The company acquired the recipe and Havana Club brand name from the Arechabalas in 1994.


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