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06.2011

Massachusetts Beverage Business

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WILL DIAGEO GO FOR THE GOLD?

As rumors go, this is a big one. Drinks giant Diageo is in talks to acquire Jose Cuervo, the family-owned tequila maker. Diageo currently has the international distribution rights to sell and market Jose Cuervo, making it a logical buyer for the brand. Diageo is interested in adding the brand to its portfolio if the terms were right, people familiar with the matter said. Both Diageo and Jose Cuervo are mum on the topic. According to industry analysts, Jose Cuervo could be worth $3 billion although Diageo is reportedly looking to acquire the brand for $2 billion. Diageo’s distribution deal with Jose Cuervo is set to expire in 2O13. If the deal goes through, this would be the second major deal in a matter of months after its $2.1 billion purchase of Mey Içki, Turkey’s leading spirits company, in February. It would also make it less likely that Diageo would make a bid for Fortune Brands’ drinks portfolio which includes the Sauza brand.

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