- Diageo has spent 3 billion pounds to make eight acquisitions over the last four years, but Diageo CEO Ivan Menezes believes the company is ready to concentrate on growing its premium brands, such as Johnny Walker Black Label and Smirnoff, for a while instead of buying companies in emerging markets.
- Menezes specifically said Tuesday that his company does not need to buy its competitor, Beam Inc., stating that Diageo's "position in total North American whiskey is strong," thanks to its porfolio of brands, which includes Bulleit Bourbon, Crown Royal and others.
- Diageo also plans to launch two new ultra-premium bourbon brands, Orphan Barrel and Blade & Bow, in 2014.
Menezes claimed that Diageo could sell as many as 600,000 cases of its Bulleit bourbon this year, eventually ratcheting that number up to a million in the future. The company's optimism about premium brands is evident right now, and with Menezes having only held his CEO title since July, it looks like expanding Diageo's reaching among higher-priced items will define his mission out of the gate.