Moet Hennessy buys 50% stake in Jay-Z’s Champagne brand

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Moet Hennessy acquires a 50% stake in rapper and entrepreneur Jay-Z’s champagne brand in a bid to bolster its cool factor and expand its distribution.

Terms of the deal, which was announced on Monday, have not been released.

Armand de Brignac, known as As of Spades because of its distinctive label, is produced in Champagne in France by a father and son, 12th and 13th generation winemakers.

Jay-Z, real name Shawn Carter, gave the brand a boost in 2006 when he featured one of their bottles in a music video after a public spinoff with rival brand Cristal. Carter accused Crystal of racism after a brand executive questioned in an interview whether partnering with a rapper would hurt his image.

In 2014, Carter bought Armand de Brignac for an undisclosed sum. The brand sold more than 500,000 bottles worldwide in 2019.

Moet Hennessy Chairman and CEO Philippe Schaus said Armand de Brignac breaks down barriers and reflects contemporary ideas of luxury, while supporting the historic traditions of Champagne.

“We are extremely proud to partner with them,” said Schaus.

Carter said the partnership will help Armand de Brignac grow and flourish, highlighting Moet Hennessy’s track record in developing luxury brands such as Dom Pérignon and Veuve Clicquot. Moet Hennessy is the wines and spirits division of luxury company LVMH.

“It’s a partnership that has felt familiar all the time,” Carter said.

Carter is one of many celebrities to benefit from a partnership with a liquor brand.

Actor George Clooney co-founded Casamigos, a tequila brand, in 2013. It was bought by beverage giant Diageo in 2017 for $ 700 million. Last year, Diageo also picked up Aviation American Gin, a brand co-owned by actor Ryan Reynolds, for $ 610 million.

Actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson recently released a brand of tequila called Teramana. Singer John Legend has his own wine label, LVE. And in 2018, singer Bob Dylan launched the Heaven’s Door whiskey brand.

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