Beverage Industry

Pernod Ricard USA acquires majority stake in Avión Spirits

July 11, 2014

Avion EspressoPernod Ricard USA, New York, completed its acquisition of a significant majority stake in Avión Spirits LLC, owner of the ultra-premium tequila brand Avión, from its joint-venture partner Tequila Avión. Pernod Ricard previously took a minority interest in Tequila Avión in July 2011 and signed a global distribution agreement.

“Thanks to the close working relationship between Pernod Ricard and Ken Austin, founder and chairman of Tequila Avión, and Jenna Fagnan, Avión Spirits president, Avión has delivered excellent results since the creation of the joint venture in 2011,” said Pernod Ricard USA Chief Executive Officer Bryan Fry in a statement. “The ultra-premium brand has become a bartender and consumer favorite and today benefits from very strong brand equity and momentum. Avión is an important brand in Pernod Ricard USA’s portfolio, and we have great confidence in its future. With our increase in ownership, we are pleased to further strengthen this partnership to continue to build a successful brand in the years ahead.”

The transaction reflects Pernod Ricard’s confidence in Avión’s brand equity and growth potential as well as the brand’s important role in Pernod Ricard’s growth ambitions in the United States, which is the company’s largest market, it says. It also illustrates the capacity of Pernod Ricard to seize targeted external growth opportunities in the super-premium spirits segment in the United States as a complement to its innovation strategy, it adds.

“With this move, Pernod Ricard is displaying significant confidence in Avión and the role it will play in bolstering their position in the United States and beyond,” Tequila Avión’s Austin said in a statement. “The Pernod Ricard people, their distributors and brokers, their route-to-market strategy and entrepreneurial spirit have been and will continue to be key drivers in taking Avión to the next level. Finally, we are very pleased to be delivering real value for Tequila Avión shareholders, who have supported us immensely and have been on this journey with us since day one."

Avión small-batch, ultra-premium spirits are available in Silver, Reposado, Añejo, Espresso Liqueur and Avión Reserva 44 in limited release.

For more information, visit www.tequilaavion.com.