Industry Issues

A-B Launches Spirits Group
Anheuser-Busch has jumped into the spirits business with the formation of a wholly owned subsidiary called Long Tail Libations Inc., based in St. Louis. The company will develop, test and market distilled spirits, including the new Jekyll & Hyde, a concept that combines two bottles of different spirits intended to be mixed as a single drink. Jekyll is said to be a 60-proof red-colored, wild berry flavor, while Hyde is an 80-proof black licorice flavor. The product is being tested in Columbia, Mo.; Denver; Las Vegas and Orlando, Fla. BI
New global division for Pernod Ricard
Pernod Ricard has formed Malibu-Kahlúa International to handle its new Malibu Rum, Kahlúa coffee liqueur and Tia Maria coffee liqueur businesses. The unit will be housed at the former Allied Domecq office complex in Westport, Conn., and will employ approximately 70 people. In addition, the company says it will be the flagship unit for Pernod Ricard’s global liqueur and cordials business.
The company named Simon Hunt, former head of marketing and innovation at Allied Domecq Spirits North America as chief executive officer of the new division. Thierry Pourchet will serve as chief financial officer; Cyril Claquin as senior vice president of marketing; Julius Criscione as vice president of operations; Harold Gorman as senior vice president and general counsel; Janice Jarrett as vice president of human resources; and Sandrine Ricard as vice president of communications. BI
PepsiCo realigns beverage management
PepsiCo announced a number of changes for its Pepsi-Cola North America and Pepsi-QTG (Quaker, Tropicana, Gatorade) Canada businesses. Pepsi-QTG Canada President Tom Bené has returned to PCNA in Purchase, N.Y., as senior vice president of sales and system transformation, while Dave Burwick was tapped to succeed Bené as president of Pepsi-QTG Canada.
Cie Nicholson was promoted to senior vice president and chief marketing officer at PCNA to fill Burwick’s vacancy. And Meena Mansharamani has been appointed to the newly created position of senior vice president of innovation and insights. The new post will include consumer research, product and package innovation and the identification of new opportunities. BI

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How beer brands are using social media to connect with consumers

Social media has become a buzzword for not just American consumers but also the business environment. Companies are turning to various social media channels to create brand awareness or possibly boost retail sales. Beer brands also are turning to social media to make their stories heard. Brand Chorus, a division of New York-based TippingGardner, conducted a Beer StoryScore Index for Beverage Industry. StoryScore is a quantitative measure of a brand’s storytelling through social management based on creativity, strategy and personality.

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