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News Briefs For May 13, 2011

May 13, 2011

• Moët Hennessy is preparing to produce sparkling wine in China via a new joint venture with local agricultural firm Ningxia Nongken. MH will be growing grapes on a 163-acre plot in Northwest China through the deal, and constructing a winery at which to craft bubbly under the Chandon brand, one of its non-Champagne labels that currently sources from California, Brazil, Argentina and Australia. MH is hoping to capitalize on China’s growth thirst for wine. At around 155 million cases annually, China is among the world’s top five wine-consuming nations, but per-capita consumption remains well below the world average, pointing to robust growth opportunities for producers like MH, which are beginning to take advantage of the country’s cheap prices for vineyard land, in addition to their import activities.

• Brown-Forman Duty Free has appointed three new executives to its team, effective immediately. Pierre Hubert Plessis has been named duty free territory manager for the U.S., Mexico and Caribbean. Prior to joining Brown-Forman, Plessis was with Actium LLC of Miami, where he was an account executive representing L’Oreal Paris in the Caribbean Travel Retail Division. Susanna Leslie has been appointed finance manager, global travel retail. She was previously a senior financial analyst with Brown-Forman. Hannah Lyons has been named trade marketing manager, travel retail for Western Europe and Africa. She was formerly Brown-Forman’s area sales manager for the South of England, specializing in American whiskies.

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