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Pernod Ricard, the world’s second-largest wine and spirits seller, has just signed the agreement for the acquisition of a majority share of Rabbit Hole Whiskey, produced and based in Louisville, Kentucky. The value of the transaction has not been disclosed and is expected to close shortly.

Rabbit Hole, an award-winning range of Kentucky spirits, is particularly recognized for its iconic, state-of-the-art distillery in the heart of Louisville. recently visited the distillery at an after party of Kentucky Derby. See video below and photos with BourbonBlog’s Tom Fischer and Rabbit Hole’s Kaveh Zamanian and Michael Motamedi.

The brand’s Straight Bourbon and Rye whiskeys are crafted with a mix of carefully selected grains, distilled in copper Vendome column stills and aged in native oak barrels by Louisville’s hot summers and cold winters.

The Bourbon category is currently undergoing a renaissance; new consumers are discovering its quality and versatility as Bourbon can be appreciated neat and has also recently earned its rightful place in modern mixology.

Founded in 2012 by whiskey maker and passionate entrepreneur Kaveh Zamanian, Rabbit Hole produces 1.2 million gallons annually.

Zamanian left his day job as a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst to fully dedicate himself to the art of crafting whiskey in the very heart of Kentucky’s whiskey culture. As part of the strategic partnership, Kaveh is keeping the majority of his shares in Rabbit Hole and will continue to operate the company.

With this strategic partnership, Pernod Ricard expands its newly created portfolio of specialty brands, gathering smaller brands with unique and comprehensive value propositions and select distribution. In the United States, Rabbit Hole will be part of the New Brand Ventures portfolio along with recently-acquired brands Smooth Ambler and Del Maguey.

Kaveh Zamanian tells, “Pernod Ricard and I share the same entrepreneurial values and our ethos and strategic visions are fully aligned. By leveraging Pernod Ricard’s extensive distribution network to reach new consumers, we are able to strengthen Rabbit Hole’s position as a brand and amplify its presence as a new voice in American Whiskey.

In partnership with Pernod Ricard, Rabbit Hole is poised to reach new heights. I am very excited about this partnership and our future together.”

For Alexandre Ricard, CEO of Pernod Ricard tells us, “This partnership is the perfect implementation of our long-term investment strategy to create sustainable value.

Kaveh and I embrace the same entrepreneurial spirit. Rabbit Hole is a fast-growing brand, strongly rooted in its terroir and very well positioned in the high-end Bourbon and Kentucky whiskey categories. We are excited to take the brand to the next stage of its very promising development.”

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