By Andy Young

Sazerac has completed yet another acquisition after it agreed a deal with Pernod Ricard and Irish Distillers for the Paddy Irish Whiskey brand.

Neither party revealed the cost of the transaction, which they have been working on since entering into exclusive negotiations earlier this month.

A simple statement from Pernod Ricard about the deal said: "Following the previous press release of 3 May 2016, Pernod Ricard and Irish Distillers announce today the signing and completion of the sale of Paddy Irish Whiskey, the fourth largest Irish whiskey brand in the world, to Sazerac. The value of the transaction is not being disclosed."

Paddy Irish Whiskey currently sells 200,000 nine-litre cases in 28 countries every year. With the Irish whiskey industry currently projecting 100 per cent growth for the category by 2020, this acquisition presents a sizeable opportunity for brand growth for Sazerac.

Speaking earlier this month about the deal, Sazerac CEO Mark Brown, said:  “In the global market, Irish whiskey experienced the fastest volume growth in the last five years, outpacing all other spirits categories. Consumers worldwide are seeing it as an alternative to other whiskies. If this deal goes through, we are confident that we will be able to take Paddy to the next level, building on its strong history and roots.”

Pernod Ricard said that the sale is part of the company’s strategy to simplify its portfolio adding that the sale “could facilitate, among other things, targeted investment in other key Irish Distiller’s whiskey brands including Jameson and Powers to support continued growth.”

The acquisition represents another sizeable investment by Sazerac, after the company announced that it is putting US$200 million into its Buffalo Trace Distillery, to help it meet the increasing demand.

The investment will take place over the next seven years and will see the acquisition of more land as well as the expansion of Buffalo Trace’s fermenting, bottling and warehousing operations.

Distillery spokesperson Kris Comstock said: “We’re still looking at shortages across the board for all of our brands. We wish we had distilled more years ago. The shortage is a real problem. We get requests for more daily, believe me, I wish we had more to sell too.”

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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