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Brown-Forman shakes up distribution in Japan

Jack Daniel’s owner Brown-Forman will end its distribution partnership with Asahi in Japan.

Jack Daniel's American single malt Brown-Forman
Brown-Forman’s portfolio includes Jack Daniel’s

Brown-Forman, whose portfolio also includes Old Forester, Woodford Reserve, Herradura Tequila and Gin Mare, will bring the distribution of its portfolio in Japan in-house.

The company will continue to work with Asahi in the region until 31 March 2024.

Aaron Martin, vice-president, general manager, Brown-Forman Japan, said: “We would like to thank Asahi and their entire team for their partnership over the past 10 years and for successfully growing our portfolio in Japan.”

The Jack Daniel’s owner noted Japan to be ‘one of the world’s largest spirits markets’, particularly for premium-plus whisky.

“We believe the new Brown-Forman Japan organisation will drive growth through the continued development of our Jack Daniel’s family of brands and the broader super-premium brand portfolio in a key market.

“This move is an important milestone for Brown-Forman and follows successful launches of owned distribution organisations in other regions of the world, including the recent transitions in Asia and South Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand.”

Last month, Jack Daniel’s lost a trademark dispute against two actors who launched a Scotch whisky brand called Jack & Victor. It came shortly after the Tennessee whiskey brand extended its Single Barrel range.

Meanwhile, at the start of June, Brown-Forman revealed it would invest US$200 million into expanding the Herradura Tequila distillery in Jalisco, Mexico.

Herradura Tequila’s sales increased by 10% in the first nine months to 31 January 2023.

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