French drinks conglomerate Pernod Ricard is eyeing e-commerce growth and has signed an agreement to acquire UK-based whisky and luxury spirits retailer The Whisky Exchange.
Source: The Whisky Exchange
Since its creation by Sukhinder and Rajbir Singh in 1999, The Whisky Exchange has become one of most successful online drinks retailers, with a catalogue of approximately 10,000 products. Since its launch, it has evolved to become a key omnichannel player, expanding its activities to on-trade supply and physical stores in the UK, with several award-winning shops in London.
It is also active in private sales and online auctions of rare spirits, two fast-expanding activities on which The Whisky Exchange will also develop innovative synergies with Pernod Ricard.
E-commerce growth, premiumisation
Pernod Ricard says the acquisition is in line with its consumer-centric strategy of meeting new consumer needs and expectations, in a context of solid e-commerce growth and strong demand for premiumisation. The drinks giant aims to leverage synergies between The Whisky Exchange’s expertise and in-house platforms such as Drinks&Co and Bodeboca.
Alexandre Ricard, chairman and CEO of Pernod Ricard, states: “E-commerce is a key channel in our long-term strategy. We are thrilled to work with industry pioneers such as Sukhinder, Rajbir and the whole team to bring The Whisky Exchange to a new step of its development.”
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Sukhinder and Rajbir Singh, founders of The Whisky Exchange, comment, “After more than 20 years building The Whisky Exchange, we are delighted to be joining the Pernod Ricard family and working with them to take the business to the next level. The Whisky Exchange and our customers have always felt like a family, and we are looking forward to maintaining this ethos with a partner that shares our values.
“Our mission remains the same: to offer the finest range of whiskies and spirits from the best producers around the world, educate and engage with consumers, and support the top on-trade establishments around the UK.”
The Whisky Exchange will continue to operate with its current team and structure, with Sukhinder and Rajbir Singh managing the business as joint managing directors. The closing of the transaction is subject to customary conditions.