US – Pernod Ricard is bolstering its agave portfolio across 50 states in the US and more than 30 international markets by acquiring a majority stake in Código 1530 Tequila, a range of ultra-premium tequilas, for an undisclosed sum.

To get the best out of its investment in the fast-growing agave category, the French wine-and-spirits major aims to use its distribution expertise in premium brands to accelerate Código’s global development.

Alexandre Ricard, chairman, and CEO of Pernod Ricard said: “Código’s range of tequilas reinforces our offer of ultra-premium plus agave products in the US, where the category is enjoying very strong momentum.

“It is a privilege to partner with Ron Snyder, Federico Vaughan, and George Strait with whom we share a common vision for Código 1530 and a common ambition to strongly accelerate and strengthen the success of the brand.”

Within the Código 1530 Tequila portfolio, its Blanco expression starts at an SRP of US$50 and its Añejo and Extra Añejo variants for US$350.

Código 1530 co-founder Ron Snyder commented that the goal of Código has always been to produce and share the best possible Tequila.

What started as simply enjoying a tasty tequila with friends in Mexico, quickly grew into an aspiration to share Código with discerning consumers around the world, he explained.

The company’s portfolio also includes two mezcal expressions (Código Mezcal Artesanal and Código Mezcal Ancestral), that will join Pernod Ricard’s existing mezcal offer of Del Maguey and Ojo de Tigre. Del Maguey is the market share leader for mezcal in the US.

In June, Mukherjee Ann Mukherjee, the CEO of Pernod Ricard’s US arm told analysts the company did not “need Tequila to be able to continue to win” but stopped short of ruling out further M&A activity in the category.

With the Código 1530 deal being the group’s third in North America in the space of a week, it indicates the alcoholic beverages giant is making a move to gain the major share of the tequila space.

The two other North American deals the maker of Absolut vodka has entered include plans to take a minority stake in the sotol brand Nocheluna and the increase of its stake in New York head-quartered wine-and-spirits group Sovereign Brands.

Pernod Ricard expects the Sovereign deal to increase its profit from recurring operations by around 3% on a full-year basis.

Earlier this month, Pernod also invested in the sotol market through its acquisition of a minority stake in the Nocheluna brand.

Sotol is a distilled spirit from the Chihuahuan desert in northern Mexico and is not made from agave.

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