Havana Club twist as Trump hints at Cuba freeze

29th November, 2016 by Kristiane Sherry

The Havana Club trademark battle between Pernod Ricard and Bacardi Limited could be set for a new twist as US president-elect Donald Trump threatens to freeze US-Cuba relations.

Havana-Club

The future of Pernod Ricard’s bid to launch its Cuba-made Havana Club into the US could be cast into doubt following a tweet from Donald Trump

Under the Obama administration, relations between the United States, which enforces an embargo against the island nation, were put on a path to “normalisation”.

The improved relations prompted Pernod Ricard, which owns the international rights to Cuban-made Havana Club outside of the US, to prepare to launch the rum in the market.

Bacardi, which owns the Puerto Rico-made Havana Club rum, is contesting the move on the grounds of trademark ownership.

Following the death of Fidel Castro, the revolutionary who went on to govern Cuba, Trump has threatened to reinstate sanctions on Cuba that had been lifted by Obama.

“If Cuba is unwilling to make a better deal for the Cuban people, the Cuban/American people and the US as a whole, I will terminate deal,” Trump tweeted on 28 November.

By re-imposing sanctions, the Trump administration could effectively block the bid to launch Pernod Ricard’s Cuban-made Havana Club in the US market.

“As a global actor of our industry with a very strong footprint in the US, our number one market, we will keep on investing in the [top] global market for wine and spirits in order to support our solid growth as we have been doing for decades,” a spokesperson for the group told The Spirits Business.

“We hope the new US government will continue to build bridges between Cuba and the United States.”

Trump policy on the North American Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has already impacted the spirits industry, with the world’s biggest Tequila maker, Jose Cuervo, delaying a much-feted initial public offering over market volatility fuelled by anti-Mexico campaign pledges.

Leave a Reply

If that's interesting, how about these?

Diageo 'may raise stake' in United Spirits

Diageo has declined to comment on reports that it is considering increasing its more...

Top 10 biggest spirits stories of 2016

The Spirits Business looks back at the biggest stories to rock the spirits more...

Signed Trump whisky auctioned for £6k

A bottle of 26-year-old GlenDronach single malt whisky signed by US more...

Experts predict top spirits trends in 2017

If you're curious about what the coming year has in store for the global more...

London bar hosts first BlackTail residency

The Bloomsbury Club Bar in London is readying to host the "first ever" more...

US state senator calls for Russian booze ban

A lawmaker in the US state of New Hampshire has proposed a ban on Russian more...

Irish whiskey exports 'to double' by 2020

Exports of Irish whiskey increased by an estimated 8% in 2016 to €505 million more...

Midleton Distillery gets €10.5m expansion

Irish Distillers is embarking on a €10.5 million (US$11.2m) expansion of its more...

Diageo identifies key trends for 2017

Drinks giant Diageo has launched its first 'Future Series' trend report to more...

Ray Lewis gifts Bourbon to Trump and Pence

Retired American footballer Ray Lewis is to launch a limited edition Bourbon more...

Glenlivet gets 'Reserve and Collect' service in TR

Pernod Ricard Travel Retail EMEA has strengthened its e-commerce offering with more...

Beam Suntory partners with Chicago Cubs

US baseball team Chicago Cubs has announced Beam Suntory as its official more...

Bacardi to distribute Ron Santa Teresa rum

Venezuelan rum company Ron Santa Teresa has signed an exclusive international more...

Rémy Cointreau unveils corporate makeover

Bruichladdich Scotch and Rémy Martin Cognac owner Rémy Cointreau has unveiled more...

Bacardi marks musical roots with Major Lazer

Bacardi has joined forces with music trio Major Lazer to launch 'The Sound of more...

Patrón Perfectionists finalists announced

Seven international bartenders will battle it out at the inaugural grand final more...

Cannabis-based booze to be 'biggest disruptor ever'

In November 2016 a fresh wave of cannabis legalisation spread throughout the more...

WSTA responds to May's 'hard Brexit' speech

The Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) has reiterated its wish for more...

Castro and Patino launch drinks marketing firm

Spirits and bar industry experts Erick Castro and Chris Patino have joined more...

Absolut unveils lime flavour after portfolio cull

Pernod Ricard has released a new lime variant for Absolut Vodka, after last more...