Campari buys US rights for Appleton Rum

15th February, 2013 by Lucy Shaw

Campari America has bought the US distribution rights for the Appleton Rum portfolio from Kobrand in a US$20 million deal that begins on 1 March.

Appleton Estate 50 Year Old

Appleton Estate 50 Year Old

Last September, Grupo Campari moved into the rum category after acquiring an 81.4% stake in Jamaican company Lascelles deMercato, owners of Appleton Estate, Wray & Nephew and Coruba Rum.

The US$414.8m deal, the third largest in the company’s history behind Wild Turkey and Skyy Spirits, gives Campari control of a rum and spirits portfolio with annual volume sales of 3.5million 9-litre cases.

Before the Kobrand deal was struck this week, Gruppo Campari’s distribution of Appleton Estate, Wray & Nephew and Coruba Rum was limited to Jamaica and the UK.

But the group is keen to benefit from distribution in key markets like the US.

“This is an important step in the integration of the Appleton portfolio into our distribution network. It confirms our commitment to achieve a swift in-sourcing of the brands with the objective to exploit the brands’ full potential in the US market,” said Bob Kunze-ConcewitzAppleton, CEO of Grupo Campari.

“Owned distribution will enable greater focus on the acquired business and more efficient brand building activities and will allow us to further leverage our strong distribution capabilities as well as to entirely capture the brand contribution in the highly strategic US market,” Kunze-Concewitz added.

Last year Appleton Estate released a 50 Year Old aged rum in celebration of 50 years of Jamaican independence priced at $5,000 a bottle.

The oldest rum in the world on sale, only 800 bottles were released globally.

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