Bacardi buys majority stake in D’UsséBy Nicola Carruthers
Grey Goose owner Bacardi has acquired a majority stake in ‘multi-billion-dollar’ brand D’Ussé Cognac following a legal battle with rapper Jay-Z.
American musician Shawn Carter, known professionally as Jay-Z, partnered with Bacardi to launch the Cognac brand in 2012.
Bacardi and Jay-Z have been embroiled in a lawsuit over the value of the brand in recent months.
Bacardi has now come to a ‘long-term’ agreement with the singer to take majority control of the ‘multi-billion-dollar’ brand. Financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed.
Jay-Z will retain a ‘significant ownership stake’ in D’Ussé.
According to IWSR Drinks Market Analysis data in 2021, D’Ussé is the best-performing Cognac brand, outpacing the category in the US with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 30% in the past three years.
“Growing D’Ussé over the past decade from an idea to one of the fastest-selling spirits in history has been a blessing,” said Jay-Z.
“The next phase of this journey will further cement D’Ussé’s legacy as one of the world’s most respected brands. I am excited to renew this partnership with Bacardi.”
The Cognac range consists of VSOP and XO variants.
The brand was created to shake up a sector that had become “a bit dusty” under the domination of Hennessy, Rémy Martin, Martell and Courvoisier.
In 2021, Jay-Z offered a ‘one-of-a-kind’ signed 1969 bottle of D’Ussé Cognac at a Sotheby’s auction, which was created to mark his 50th birthday.
It fetched US$52,500, marking the first time that a bottle of D’Ussé has been sold at auction.