Exclusive news and research on the wine, spirits and beer business

News Briefs for May 19, 2014

May 19, 2014

Pernod Ricard’s Beefeater gin has released a new, limited edition package inspired by the brand’s London headquarters. Rolling out across 26 global markets this month, the Beefeater Spirit of London bottle features imagery of the Union Jack flag, as well as a cut-out silhouette of the brand’s iconic Beefeater figure. Additionally, the package utilizes an image of London-based fashion icon Justin O’Shea, who was originally featured in Beefeater’s “My London” campaign. The limited edition Spirit of London bottle will be available in 700-ml., 750-ml. and 1-liter formats at 40% abv, and 750-ml. and 1-liter formats at 47% abv in select global markets. In other Pernod Ricard news, the company’s Malibu rum has unveiled a new campaign, Best Summer Ever, that includes consumer activations across the U.S., an online content series featuring signature cocktails and a tie-up with band OneRepublic that will see Malibu cocktails sampled along the band’s summer concert tour.

•The battle to privatize liquor sales in Oregon could heat up this week, with supporters of privatization gaining authorization to begin gathering signatures toward a ballot initiative. The Oregon Supreme Court approved ballot language Friday that would present voters with an initiative that “Allows qualified retail store to sell liquor; imposes wholesale tax to replace current state markup,” according to The Oregonian newspaper. Privatization supporters had hoped to avoid using the word “tax” in the ballot language. Meanwhile, opponents of liquor privatization released a poll funded by the Oregon Beer and Wine Distributors group showing that 64% of likely voters say the state’s current control system for spirits “works just fine.” In a differently worded question, likely voters preferred 57% to 34% the system of state-controlled liquor sales to a privatized system that would allow grocery stores to get into the liquor retailing business.

•Maurice Doyle, chief marketing officer at William Grant & Sons, will leave the company in August to take on a new role externally, the company confirmed in a brief statement to SND. Doyle has been with William Grant since 2009. Prior to that he was Bacardi’s managing director for Travel Retail, and also has held marketing roles at Procter & Gamble.

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