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05.2008

Massachusetts Beverage Business

archivedAtPressTime

PERNOD WINS for V&S

France’s Pernod Ricard SA has won an auction to acquire Sweden’s Vin & Sprit AB, the maker of Absolut vodka, people familiar with the matter said.  The details of the winning bid weren't immediately clear but V&S, which is owned by the Swedish government, was expected to fetch as much as $7 billion.  Absolut is the world’s third-largest premium liquor in terms of volume, after Diageo PLC’s Smirnoff vodka and Bacardi rum.  Fortune Brands, which teamed up with Nordic Capital, a private-equity firm, was thought by some to have a leg up because it already distributes Absolut in the US.  Two other bidders – Bacardi Ltd. and a group comprising Swedish investment firms EQT Partners AB and Investor AB – earlier fell out of the running.                          

                           -Wall Street Journal

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