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Pernod Ricard Takes Majority Stake In Craft Distiller Rabbit Hole

June 14, 2019

Pernod Ricard has added to its craft whiskey portfolio, agreeing to take a majority stake in Kentucky-based distiller Rabbit Hole for an undisclosed sum. Rabbit Hole will join Pernod’s New Brand Ventures division, which also includes brands such as Monkey 47 gin, Smooth Ambler West Virginian whiskey and Del Maguey mezcal. The deal is expected to close shortly.

“Rabbit Hole is a fast-growing brand, strongly rooted in its terroir and very well positioned in the high-end Bourbon and Kentucky whiskey categories,” said Pernod CEO Alexandre Ricard.

Rabbit Hole, founded by psychoanalyst Kaveh Zamanian, opened an $18 million, 55,000-square foot, 1.2-million proof gallon distillery in downtown Louisville last year. Zamanian will continue to operate the company.

The Rabbit Hole portfolio includes a Kentucky Straight Bourbon, Kentucky Straight Rye, Straight Bourbon Finished in PX Sherry Casks, and London Dry Gin-Kentucky Rye Barrel Finished. This summer, a high-rye Bourbon made with malted rye will be added.

The brand’s current volume is around 8,500 cases, distributed across over a dozen states. Pernod will look to expand on that base moving forward.—Daniel Marsteller

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