On the Street: Organization Changes at Pernod Ricard

July 26/M2 EquityBites -- French wine and spirits company Pernod Ricard announced organization changes as a part of its Agility corporate project. Under the project, the company has created a new brand company, Premium Wine Brands.

Premium Wine Brands is in charge of the development and global strategy of the group's strategic wine brands. The portfolio includes: Australian wines (Jacob's Creek), New Zealand wines (Montana and Brancott), as well as Spanish and Argentinean wine brands with international potential (Campo Viejo and Graffigna).

Pernod Ricard said that the new company's objective is to accelerate the international development of these brands within the Pernod Ricard distribution network.

Jean-Christophe Coutures, currently chairman and CEO of Pernod Ricard Pacific, will become chairman and CEO of Premium Wine Brands. He will report to Thierry Billot, managing director, Brands.

Coutures, prior to his current position, was president and representative director of Jinro Ballantine's Company Limited (JBC) and Jinro Ballantines Import Company Limited (JBIC). Before that, he was chairman & CEO Pernod Ricard Korea and earlier VP Finance Pernod Ricard Asia. He joined Pernod Ricard in 1997 as business analyst at CSR Pampryl.

Also, the responsibilities of The Absolut Company are now extended to include all the international vodka brands. The Absolut Company now brings together all the vodka brands of the group with an international outlook, such as the ABSOLUT, Friis and Wyborowa brands.

The objective is reportedly to establish the group's strategy for the entire Vodka segment. In addition, The Absolut Company retains the responsibility for the Malibu and Kahlúa brands.

Stephane Longuet, currently vice president finance of The Absolut Company, has been appointed chief operating officer of the Standard Vodka division of The Absolut Company. He will now report to Philippe Guettat, chairman and CEO of The Absolut Company.

Longuet, prior to his current position which he has held since August 2008, was chief financial officer of Pernod Ricard Italia. Before that, he was CFO of Pernod Ricard Deutschland,. He joined the Group in August 1998 as auditor with Pernod Ricard Europe.

As a result, Rolf Cassergren has been appointed vice president finance at The Absolut Company, in charge of Finance, Accounting, Reporting, IT, Customer Service and General Services.

In addition, a new region covering Sub-Saharan Africa, called Pernod Ricard Sub-Saharan Africa, has been created, reporting into Pernod Ricard Europe. Pernod Ricard Sub-Saharan Africa will be a direct subsidiary of Pernod Ricard Europe with the objective of accelerating the group's development in this region with great potential.

Henry Carew, currently managing director of Pernod Ricard Southern Central Europe, is now managing director, Pernod Ricard Sub-Saharan Africa, effective October 1, 2010. He will report to Laurent Lacassagne, chairman and CEO of Pernod Ricard Europe.

Carew, who has been in his current position since 2009, most recently was managing director of South Danube, having joined Pernod Ricard in 2006. Prior to that, he was regional manager for the former Yugoslavian countries in 1993 on behalf of Allied Domecq, then general manager of the Cluster â Countries of Southern Europe.

The company said that a replacement for Carew will be announced at a later date.

Lastly, Pernod Ricard announced that Michel Bord has decided to relinquish the post of managing director, Distribution Network, effective July 30, 2010, following a 20-year career with the company. Bord's responsibilities will now be assumed by Pierre Pringuet, chief executive officer.

Also, Bruno Rain, currently managing director, Human Resources is now responsible for the group's Corporate Responsibility Policy, which includes Responsible Consumption, Environmental Responsibility and Corporate Ethics.

From the August 2, 2010, Prepared Foods E-dition