Pernod Ricard SA history, profile and corporate video

 Pernod Ricard SA engages in the production and sale of wines, spirits, and non-alcoholic beverages. It operates through a single business line, wine and spirits sales, which is organized into four geographical segments, being France, Europe, the Americas, and Asia/Rest of the World. The company assesses the performance of each segment on the basis of sales and its contribution after advertising and promotion expenses. The group’s global brands include: Absolut, Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s, Glenlivet, Royal Salute, Jameson Irish whisky, Martell cognac, Havana Club rum, Beefeater gin, Kahlua and Malibu liqueurs, Mumm and Perrier-Jouet champagnes and Jacob’s Creek, Brancott, Camp Viejo and Graffigna wines. Pernod Ricard was founded in 1975 and is headquartered in Paris, France.


Pernod Ricard was created in 1975 through the link-up of two French anise-based spirits companies: Pernod, which was founded in 1805, and Ricard, founded by Paul Ricard in 1932. A look back at the history of an expansion driven by entrepreneurial, passionate and visionary people.


For over 200 years, Pernod has been a company with a rich history and an indomitable spirit. It has consistently realized its potential for growth while remaining true to its original values of conviviality and authenticity. The story of Pernod began in 1805. Born in Switzerland in 1776, Henri-Louis Pernod founded his distillery in the town of Pontarlier, located in the region of Doubs in eastern France. Its name: “La Maison Pernod Fils”. The company produced and marketed Absinthe Pernod Fils, a drink inspired by an elixir whose recipe Henri-Louis Pernod had acquired from its creator, Dr. Ordinaire.
In 1926, “La Maison Pernod Fils” merged with “Distillerie Hémard”, founded in Montreuil in 1871 by Ariste Hémard, and “Pernod Père et Fils”, founded in Avignon in 1872 by Jules-François Pernod. These three companies came together to create “Établissements Pernod”. This organisation was directed by Jean Hémard, the grandson of Ariste Hémard. 
In 1959, “Établissements Pernod” became “Pernod SA”.


The story of Ricard, a historical subsidiary of Pernod Ricard, began in Marseille in 1932 with Paul Ricard, entrepreneur and creative genius. Paul Ricard was born in 1909 in Sainte-Marthe, which was then but a small village north of Marseille. Passionate about chemistry and design, he enrolled in the Beaux-Arts [Academy of Fine Arts]. At the age of 17, this son of a wine merchant learned the trade at his father’s side. Going from café to café, rubbing elbows with customers, he was inspired to invent his “own” pastis. Indeed, in Marseille in the 1930s, every bar owner made his own anise-based liqueur. But the inconsistent taste and cloying sweetness of the mixtures wasn’t pleasing to connoisseurs. Paul Ricard was determined to find the “ideal” formula.
For over a year, he tested countless recipes. Every night in a make-shift laboratory, the young man would macerate fennel, aniseed and Provençal herbs, distilling, filtering, etc. His aim: to find the perfect flavor, one that captured the pure, fresh taste of aniseed.
Finally, in 1932, his original recipe was born. Paul Ricard gave it his own name, ‘Ricard’, and set it apart from all competitors by defining it as “the true Pastis of Marseille”. The quality and fresh taste of his aperitif are the results of this skilful (and secret) blend of aniseed, liquorice and aromatic herbs. Today, Ricard is the no. 1 anise-based spirit in the world.


 Son of Paul Ricard, the founder of the Ricard brand, Patrick Ricard was born on 12 May 1945.in his lifetime he dedicated over 34 years to the transformation of a family business into a leader of the wine and spirits industry. It was in 1978 that Patrick Ricard took the reins of the Pernod Ricard GroupThe new Chairman and CEO had an ambition: conquer Europe and then the world. The daring captain of industry initiated some first acquisitions including  Wild Turkey bourbon in 1981, Jameson Irish whiskey in 1988, leading Australian wine brand Jacob’s Creek in 1989.He also engaged in a joint-venture with Havana Club International, which was – sealed in 1993. Some ten years later Patrick Ricard, together with Pierre Pringuet, transformed the Group into  a global leader in the industry. From 2000 to 2010, Patrick and Pierre signed off three of the most important acquisitions ever made in the wine and spirits industry, for a cumulative invesment of close to 20 billion Euros: Seagram (Chivas, Martell) in 2001, Allied Domecq (Ballantines, Malibu, Mumm, Perrier-Jouët) in 2005 and finally Vin & Sprit with its iconic Absolut brandin 2008.

In the same year, Patrick Ricard nominated Pierre Pringuet as CEO of the company, and from there on focused on his role as Chairman. The visionary entrepreneur Patrick Ricard leaves behind him a Group with strong values that continue to be the foundation of the Pernod Ricard company culture: entrepreneurial spirit, mutual trust, sense of ethics and, of course, conviviality. “You never succeed on your own, it is a team that wins”, was his mantra. Partick sadly passed away on 17th August 2012.


In 1975, Paul Ricard and Jean Hémard joined forces in creating Pernod Ricard. Their aim was to diversify their range of products and especially to capture new, international markets.Pernod Ricard is the story of a family business that grew into a major international Group. This human adventure continues to be written daily by the devoted and audacious men and women who are building the company that has made ‘conviviality’ an original way of managing human relations.
Throughout 80 countries, the Group’s 19,000 employees carry forward the values which are its strength: an entrepreneurial spirit, mutual trust and a strong sense of ethics.”

*Information from Forbes.com and Pernod-ricard.com

**Video published on YouTube by “The Visual House