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Exclusive: Beam Taps Moscato Trend With Courvoisier Gold Launch

September 5, 2012

Beam Inc. has added an innovative new offering to its Courvoisier Cognac franchise. Rolling out nationwide tomorrow, Courvoisier Gold is a first-to-market blend of Cognac and Moscato wine sourced from the south of France. Priced at $24.99 a 750-ml., the 18%-abv expression is billed as a lower-alcohol alternative to traditional Cognac, offering what Beam says is a refreshing and approachable taste experience. “We believe Courvoisier Gold will not only appeal to the many existing fans of our portfolio, but will also give new consumers a reason to try Cognac for the first time,” says Megan Frank, director of Courvoisier at Beam.

“Moscato is the fastest-growing wine varietal and mixed with Cognac, it provides a unique, smooth taste,” adds Frank. According to Nielsen data, off-premise retail sales of Moscato were up 73% in both volume and revenue in 2011.

Courvoisier Gold is one of several recent innovations intended to broaden Courvoisier’s appeal. The Moscato-Cognac hybrid is positioned to complement the June 2011 launch of Courvoisier Rosé ($24.99), a female-targeted 18%-abv blend of Cognac and French red wine grapes. Earlier this year, meanwhile, Beam unveiled the 40%-abv C by Courvoisier ($34.99), a small-batch, double barrel-aged expression targeted primarily toward male consumers.

The third-largest Cognac brand in the U.S., Courvoisier struggled throughout the economic downturn, steadily losing volume from 2007 to 2010. Last year, however, the brand staged a turnaround, rising nearly 10% to approximately 420,000 cases, according to Impact Databank. Similarly, for the six months through June marking Beam’s fiscal first half, Courvoisier reported North American net sales growth of 21%.

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