By James Atkinson

Diageo and Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs have created a new joint venture that has acquired premium tequila brand, DeLeón.

The joint venture, a 50/50 global partnership between Diageo and Combs Wine & Spirits, builds on the separate strategic alliance formed by Diageo and Combs Enterprises to develop and grow the Cîroc vodka brand.

Since the alliance began in 2007, Cîroc has grown from just 50,000 cases a year into a nearly two million case brand. The joint venture acquisition of DeLeón will allow the brand to benefit from Diageo's strong distribution network, supply chain, and marketing capability and Sean Combs' access to influencers and proven track record of marketing luxury lifestyle brands, according to Diageo. [continued below]

Diageo said DeLeón is a 100 per cent blue weber agave boutique tequila brand with a loyal following in Hollywood and the U.S. music industry. It has five variants with suggested retail prices ranging from $120.00 to over $1,000.00. 

Diageo North America president Larry Schwartz said the DeLeón deal is Diageo's latest step towards returning to a leading position in tequila in North America, after cutting ties with Jose Cuervo early last year.

“Ultra-premium and above tequila is a very exciting segment – we already have a strong brand there with Don Julio and are pleased to complement that offering with DeLeón,” he said.

Brent Hocking, founder of DeLeón tequila, added: “In creating DeLeón, I brought the skills of fine wine-making and natural barrel aging to the art of tequila. The result was a spirit unparalleled in purity and taste. I am entrusting DeLeón Tequila to the capable hands of Diageo and Sean Combs as both have demonstrated a commitment to luxury and quality which reflects my own commitment to the DeLeón brand.”

The Shout Team

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