INDIA – Global spirits producer, Pernod Ricard has appointed Thibault Cuny (44) as new Chief Executive Officer who will lead the company’s operations India, report ET Retail.

Cuny, who was managing director of Brazil succeeds Guillaume Girard Reydet to lead a market considered to have accounted for 10% of the global sales in the latest financial year ended June.

Prior to joining Pernod Ricard Brasil in 2012, Cuny served as the Chief Financial Officer at Pernod Ricard USA, LLC since March 2009.

He served at Pernod Ricard Holding in Paris as Audit and Development Manager and as Executive Vice President – Finance at Pernod Ricard South Asia since 2006.

Mr. Cuny is a graduate of Edhec Business School in France and began his career with Arthur Andersen and EY.

He is said to have had an Indian stint during his early years in Pernod Ricard after working under the leadership of Param Uberoi who is credited with building the country’s most profitable alcoholic beverages enterprise.

In the last financial year, India edged China to become the second-largest market by net sales revenue in a full year.

The country rose behind the US, which has 18% share of worldwide sales. China’s revenue share stood at 9%, followed by France and global travel retail with 8% each.

Pernod Ricard India’s net sales (company turnover excluding government taxes and margins) are estimated at over Rs 8,000 crore (US$1.16 billion).

Pernod Ricard is India’s second-largest spirits company after United Spirits, which is owned by global rival Diageo.

It stakes claim to the domestic mid to premium whiskey market with three brands- Blender’s Pride, Royal Stag and Imperial Blue.

ET Retail reports that the three brands, along with global portfolio comprising of include Ballantine’s Havana Club and Jameson sold closer to 50 million cases (of 9 litres each) annually.