Jose Cuervo Increases Stake in Conor McGregor’s Whiskey Brand

While reporting its first quarter earnings, drinks company Becle — owner of Jose Cuervo — disclosed a larger investment in Conor McGregor’s Irish whiskey brand, Proper No. Twelve.

Becle had possessed a 20% stake in the MMA champion’s brand. Now, the company has increased its investment to reach 49% in Eire Born Spirits, which owns and markets Proper No. Twelve.

Proper No. Twelve launched in 2018, and has rapidly expanded in sales and distribution. The whiskey won a Rising Star Growth Brand from Beverage Dynamics earlier this year.

Elsewhere in the earnings report, Becle announced a 5.3% net sales increase, globally, for the first quarter of 2020. About a third of the company’s revenue comes from Jose Cuervo Tequila, which was up 18.2% during that time period.

How the spread of COVID-19 affects sales in future quarters remains to be seen.

“Becle has responded quickly to the rapidly changing macro environment as a result of the COVID-19 global pandemic,” the company says in its earnings report. “We have worked closely with our supply chain and distribution partners developing plans to ensure we can continue to support our customers around the world. We are extremely appreciative of the efforts of all our employees and their dedication during these extraordinary and unprecedented times. Notwithstanding these challenges, during the first quarter, net sales increased 5% year-over-year on an underlying basis, despite a volume contraction for the same period. We will continue to closely monitor the situation and adapt to the changing environment and macro challenges.”

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