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Pernod Says It’s Not Interested In Agency Brands

December 17, 2012

Last week’s announcement that Diageo was ending its longtime affiliation with Jose Cuervo sparked speculation that Pernod Ricard might look to add the top-selling Tequila brand to its portfolio. But Pernod, which has always emphasized its strong preference for owned brands over agency brands, has made clear its lack of interest in Cuervo.

“I don’t see that agency brands are the way forward for us,” Philippe Dreano, who heads Pernod’s Americas unit, said last Thursday on a conference call with analysts. “We have no plans concerning agency brands,” he continued, adding that there is “no strategic need” for any agency brands in Pernod’s Americas portfolio. While Pernod does handle some brands on an agency basis—notably Beam’s Teacher’s Scotch whisky in Brazil—the vast majority of its global portfolio is comprised of its own brands.

Jose Cuervo has been an agency brand for Diageo in the U.S. and numerous other markets around the globe for 25 years. While Diageo and Grupo Tequila Cuervo have been in talks over the past year that were rumored to have Diageo acquiring the Tequila brand for around $3 billion, those talks collapsed in recent days. Diageo’s distribution deal with Cuervo ends in June 2013.

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