Pernod Ricard suffered the full burden of a collapse in sales during the Covid-19 crisis. But the world’s second number of wines and spirits has recovered quickly, particularly driven by the recovery and reopening of bars and restaurants. Based on these results, the owner of the Jameson whiskey brand, Martell cognac, and even Absolut vodka wants to prepare for the consequences, by external growth. While the Covid crisis accelerated the digitalization of companies, the French group so announced “signing the Whiskey Exchange Acquisition Agreement “, one of the leaders in the online sale of premium spirits. The amount of the transaction is not specified.
Created in 1999 in the United Kingdom by the Sukhinder and Rajbir Singh brothers, The Whiskey Exchange has a catalog of around 10,000 products, including pure Talisker, Glenfiddish or Balvenie malts. Two brothers, talking to each other “I’m happy to join the Pernod Ricard family”will retain management of his company within the French group.
For Pernod Ricardo, the advantage is that this platform “(is) also present in distribution channels (restaurants, hotels), private sales and online auctions of rare spirits “the group said in a press release on Tuesday.
However, it was this segment of activity, “on-trade”, that significantly enabled the brand to quickly reconnect with profits during the recovery. The brand, which recorded a current cash flow of 1.745 billion euros at the end of June, an all-time record, also noted. “the dynamism of e-commerce“.
“E-commerce is an essential channel of our long-term strategy “said Alexandre Ricard, the group’s chief executive.
Also, in order to accelerate its digitization in relation to the British competitor and world leader Diage (Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff …), the French group wants to develop “synergies between The Whiskey Exchange know-how and Drinks & Co and Bodeboc’s own platforms“.
The lifting of restrictions has boosted results in China and the United States
The group did not give numerical forecasts for the financial year 2021/22, which started on July 1, but said that it expects sales to continue after the “very good” first quarter.
Pernod Ricard indicated in early September that he expects “good growth” in turnover this year, after a 4% increase in the financial year 2020/21, with just over 8.8 billion euros in turnover.
Also, the annual turnover shows an organic growth of 9.7% to 8.824 billion euros, while the turnover in the fourth quarter jumped by 56.5%, in the comparable period.
The effect of catching up is significant in any case. With the cessation of sales in transport points (airports, in particular) as well as in bars and restaurants during the closing, the group experienced a drop in turnover of 9.5% during the financial year.2019-2020. and 4% in the first half of 2020-2021.
Champagne owner Mumm, however, remained “very cautious” about tourism-related spending over the next 10 months due to health restrictions that are still in place.
The Pernod Ricard title rose sharply at 4pm on Tuesday, trading at 190.2 euros per share, up more than 4%. The group also announced it would continue its € 500 million share buyback program during the 2021/22 financial year.
The group employs 18,500 people worldwide and owns 240 brands.