Pernod Ricard intends to open more marketing possibilities in Africa by bottling Indian whisky brands for continent's consumers this year

, June 23, 2014 () – French multinational alcoholic beverage company, Pernod Ricard said it intends to open more marketing possibilities in Africa by bottling two Indian whisky brands (Imperial Blue and Royal Stag) for the continent’s consumers this year.

It has pinpointed the Nigerian and Kenyan markets as key frontiers for early entry.

Imperial Blue and Royal Stag are the biggest brands on Pernod's portfolio with the latter being the company’s global cashcow.

If the plan comes to fruition, it would be the first time the products are produced outside its home market, India.

Pernod Ricard currently export its products to about half of African markets through its subsidiaries in six key African countries, including Angola, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Namibia and Nigeria.

Its decision to bottle key products in the continent will open new opportunities for the company and offer millions of people direct access to the product.

Executive Director at Pernod Ricard India, Sumeet Lamba told The Times of India that the company intends to do this to gain acceptance from local populations in African countries where it currently export its product. The exported drinks were initially targeted at Indians living in the Africa Diaspora.

"The effort is being led by our affiliates in Africa wherein they are managing the process, including local production and marketing.
We (in India) are involved in the launch from a technical perspective (blending) and to maintain consistency in key elements of the brand like packaging and positioning."

Africa currently contributes about 5 percent of the company's net sales with most sales from South Africa. The company hopes to double net sales from Africa by 2017.

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