CHINA – Pernod Ricard and Wuliangye International (HK), one of China’s largest baijiu producers, have signed a strategic cooperation memorandum of understanding to jointly to work towards developing sales channels in Asia.

The companies intend to carry out collaborative communication and comprehensive exchanges by jointly strengthening infrastructure, developing regional sales channel systems, starting from Southeast Asia.

Through the partnership, Pernod Ricard and Wuliangye aim to capitalize on shared resources to boost their joint development in Southeast Asia with potential expansion to other markets in Asia outside of China and beyond.

Mr Philippe Guettat, Chairman and CEO of Pernod Ricard Asia commented: “We are excited to form a new strategic partnership with a respected Baiju leader, Wuliangye, and embark a new adventure together.

“Imported spirits and baiju have both enjoyed a long and glorious history in their respective markets. Joining our forces and expertise today marks a historic milestone in the industry.

“Leveraging Pernod Ricard’s established network and experience, I am sure this partnership will bring unprecedented innovative forces to the market.” 

Mr Li Shuguang, Party Committee Secretary and Chairman of Wuliangye Group added: “The Asia market beyond China will be a very important stepping stone for Wuliangye as it treads into the international market.

“Wuliangye attaches paramount importance to its partnership with Pernod Ricard and is confident that by working together we will expand across the Asia market.”

By fully leveraging this landmark collaboration with Wuliange, Pernod Ricard aims to enhance a win-win relationship that will enable both companies to accelerate further development. 

Notably, China is proving to be an important market for the French spirits and wine group already having registered a 6% growth in quarter one sales in the FY20.

Pernod Ricard has also initiated construction of a malt whisky distillery in Emeishan, Sichuan in China that will see the company invest US$150 million.

The distillery will be developed on a 13-hectare and will also house an immersive visitor centre. Pernod Ricard plans to start production in 2021, with the first batch of release expected in 2023.