2011 was a remarkable year in view of the number of records broken and we can now reap the rewards of the decisive choices made in previous years: to refocus the brand portfolio on a limited number of leading brands, or potential leaders in their respective markets; control over the distribution network which is now 85%-owned; major investment to stimulate the ontrade and duty-free markets and priority for upmarket innovation. All this was achieved whilst remaining on course in the search for perfection. In the same manner as the results which have been achieved, the emerging outlook unequivocally demonstrates that the search for perfection is the most promising of strategies.
Christian Liabastre, Executive Vice President Brands Strategy and Development
Tradition and innovation
The recovery in the US, the boom in Asia, and the growth in Europe, despite an uncertain economic climate, has meant that all the brands in RémyCointreau’s markets recorded growth, at times remarkable. The figures demonstrate the validity of consistently pursuing an upmarket strategy, both upstream and downst ream: the nobility of ingre dients which Rémy Martin is determined should remain the symbol of Fine Champagne;the selection of orange peel which underlies the aromatic intensity of Cointreau; loyalty to the Muscat grapes of the Aegean Sea islands which spark Metaxa’s bouquet; the unequalled craftsmanship of the cellar masters and the determination of the teams who, step-by-step, introduce prescribers to the subtle complexity of Louis XIII in the world’s most prestigious venues and a relentless search for pride of place in every bar. Nothing is left to chance in the search for superiority based on which RémyCointreau determines its course. This explains the remarkable position of Rémy Martin VSOP in the Chinese market, Cointreau’s strength of character in the US, St-Rémy’s leadership in countries favouring brandy, the ground gained by Mount Gay Rums in new regions, etc. The extensive innovation implemented throughout the year was all in the name of this superiority: the launch of RémyMartin Centaure, the deployment of RémyMartin V, the move upmarket
for Metaxa with Metaxa 12 Stars and the aggressive strategy for St-Rémy Cream. The epitome of this search for innovation through perfection was clearly expressed at the ceremony which accompanied the emergence of the first Louis XIII Jeroboams: this was a superb tribute to the generations that have protected the heritage of eaux-de-vie, which are unique throughout the world.
The strength of our values
Rémy Cointreau’s strength, represented by its brands, is its ability to reinvent itself whilst retaining the patience required for the eaux-de-vie ageing process. Hence the importance of the RémyCointreau Brand Academy. This internal mobile university has been established to share this culture of perfection, embodied by the cellar masters and master distillers. All 1,560 employees who are part of brand development can embrace the values on which their success is based. The number of sessions increased rapidly in 2011, with high demand from our teams throughout the world. At the edge of China, all the young dragons of South-East Asia are markets with strong purchasing power for cognac. Cointreau has its eye on India as well as Japan. Russia has proved to be a growth driver for all luxury brands, as has Brazil, South Africa and Australia. Each of these markets naturally requires a specific approach and awareness, however “nothing but perfection”, RémyCointreau’s new signature, will remain the common inspiration.