NBV Investments Inc., a subsidiary of Austin, Nichols & Co. and an affiliate of Pernod Ricard USA, announced Dec. 8 that it has agreed to take a majority stake in craft producer Smooth Ambler Spirits Co. The deal, subject to regulatory approval, is expected to close in early 2017.
Founded in 2009, Smooth Ambler Spirits Co. is located in the Greenbrier Valley of West Virginia and produces Smooth Ambler Contradiction Bourbon, Old Scout Single Barrel Bourbon and other high-end spirits. Under the terms of the transaction, Smooth Ambler cofounder and head distiller John Little will assume the role of CEO. John Foster will also remain as director of sales and Marketing.
Smooth Ambler will add to Pernod Ricard USA’s craft brands. The New York-based spirits and wine company, a subsidiary of Paris, France-based Pernod Ricard SA, earlier this year acquired craft gin brand Monkey 47.
Pernod’s other spirits include Absolut vodka, Chivas Regal Scotch, Jameson Irish whiskey, Beefeater gin, Martell Cognac, and Avión tequila, as well as wine brands Jacob’s Creek, Brancott Estate and G.H. Mumm. Pernod Ricard in early December agreed to sell Domecq brandies and wines to Bodega Las Copas.