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News Briefs for October 30, 2020

October 30, 2020

•In third quarter results released this morning, Altria Group Inc. subsidiary Ste. Michelle Wine Estates posted a revenue decline of 6%, with wine shipment volumes falling 3.9% to around 1.9 million cases. Revenues for the nine months were down 10.1%, although higher pricing partially offset an 11.4% shipment decline to around 5.2 million cases. Reported and adjusted OCI in the third quarter rose by 18.8% and 25%, respectively, due to lower selling and G&A costs, partly offset by lower volume. The full nine months saw OCI fall by more than 100% to $347 million, with adjusted OCI down 4% to $48 million. In its first quarter, Ste. Michelle had recorded pre-tax charges of $392 million in cost of sales, including a $292 million inventory write-off and $100 million in estimated losses on future non-cancelable grape purchase commitments.

•Tequila Partida is launching an Añejo Cristalino as the latest addition to its lineup. The expression is distilled from Blue Weber agave that’s cooked 24 hours, then aged a minimum of 18 months in American white oak medium toast ex-Bourbon barrels before being filtered through activated carbon. The filtration removes most of the liquid’s color but leaves aromas and flavor intact; the liquid is then diluted with demineralized volcanic spring water to bring it to 40% abv. Añejo Cristalino launches nationwide in November, retailing for $60 a 750-ml. Partida has a sales and marketing partnership with Edrington.

•Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits has named John Landry as executive vice president and general manager for Nevada. Since 2012, Landry served as executive vice president and general manager of SGWS’s Coastal Pacific Wine & Spirits division based in Washington State. In his new role he will report to Larry Ruvo, senior managing director, Nevada, and Patrick Daul, president, West region. Additionally, Southern Glazer’s has promoted Kim Scarpone to senior vice president, spirits, Nevada. Scarpone previously led Southern Glazer’s business in Pennsylvania as executive vice president and general manager. Scarpone comes to her new role with substantial experience working with casinos and will report to Landry.

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