Marketing Brand Safety Brand Strategy

Pernod Ricard’s significant ad spend set to continue


By Jennifer Faull | Deputy Editor

September 2, 2021 | 3 min read

Pernod Ricard has posted its full-year results for 2021, with the Absolut maker declaring that it will “emerge stronger from the crisis” after sales jumped nearly 5% to €8.8bn.

Pernod Ricard

Pernod Ricard has been boosted by four key hires

Chief executive Alexandre Ricard told investors that he expected the momentum to continue for the remainder of the year and into next.

“Thanks to our solid foundation, our teams and our brand portfolio, we will emerge stronger from this crisis,” he said.

And this positive outlook has spilled over into its advertising and promotional spend. It invested 16% of its sales into marketing last year, with the company saying it was a “good indication” of its “willingness ... to be very active in reallocating those resources depending on the opportunities”.

“We, of course, expect and will continue to invest significantly in terms of A&P and structures, to seize all the growth opportunities around us and really to invest to support our future growth,” added Ricard.

It comes after a shake-up to both its marketing teams and agency roster in the past year.

Internally, it made four key hires last October under the direction of new UK marketing boss Raja Banerji. Estelle Martin was promoted to the newly-created position of head of experiential & consumer activation, hinting that spend will continue to funnel into experiential marketing events.

Meanwhile, Marnie Corrigan and Laura Stephen both joined as brand director for its key and its gin, Irish whiskey and no/low portfolio respectively.

Finally, Mathew Buttery was hired as director of digital & e-commerce, where sales grew 63% this year.

On the agencies front, in the past year alone it has shifted its £10m UK media account to Manning Gottlieb and appointed Wavemaker to lead its $22m USA media account, while Ogilvy was named its global creative partner for Pernod’s tequila and mezcal division earlier this year.

The new cohort will be expected to maintain the strong sales of the past year, which were up in all major regions despite the declines in travel retail.

In the Americas it saw growth of 14% sales, while Asia and the rest of the world markets saw a sales lift of 11%. Sales in Europe were up 4%.

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