Allied Domecq has created a specialist team to promote key brands in the style bar market, including Skyy Vodka launched last week in the UK.Similar to Seagram’s Ideal Brands concept, balance spirits ltd will be Allied’s strategic on-trade marketing operation specifically aimed at driving its brands in top bars and chic city venues.”We put the team together in February this year to push our top line brands into the fashionable bars in cities across the UK,” said sales manager Mark Esling. He heads a team of four other “players” who will be offering “on the ground support” to style bars in the major UK metropolitan areas and will control a separate budget to help support the brands and any new ventures.”Style bars are a unique sector of the market place and style leaders require a tailored strategy towards marketing and support. balance is a specialist in this area of the market, identifying future trends, developing existing products and seeding new brands,” he said. Allied’s four core brands such as Sauza, Beefeater gin, Kahlua coffee liqueur and Ballantine’s scotch whisky form the basis of the brand onslaught but some old and new faces will be introduced. Ballantine’s Gold, Ballantine’s 21 year-old, Laphroaig, Canadian Club, Courvoisier Cognac and Tia Maria will be on offer plus Crown Jewel, the 50 deg premium Beefeater gin, once limited to duty free only, will be released at the end of June on the bar shelf.Sauza Hornitos, which has dominated the US and Mexican Tequila craze, is launched in the UK and Allied has also won the UK rights to distribute Skyy Vodka from Campari International. The other non-Allied brands will be Bols liqueurs which have been re-packaged and re-invented for the cocktail scene.”New cocktails recipes will be available using the balance brands. We are in negotiations with the Schrager Group, Match and Oliver Peyton’s bars and restaurants and the future looks promising,” said Esling.Elliot Lane

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