Chicago, Illinois, September 2, 2020 – Beam Suntory, a global leader in premium spirits, today announced that it has acquired On The Rocks Premium Cocktails, a rapidly growing premium ready-to-drink cocktail brand.
Beam Suntory previously owned a minority interest in On The Rocks, which features Beam Suntory’s brands in its range of premium spirits-based pre-mixed cocktails.
“On the Rocks is the pioneer in the premium pre-mixed cocktails category, and joining forces couldn’t come at a better time,” said Albert Baladi, president & CEO of Beam Suntory. “On The Rocks is perfectly positioned to address evolving consumer preferences, including convenience, quality, the emerging home-premise, and cocktails-to-go. We have an ambition to become #1 in the spirits-based ready-to-drink market, and On The Rocks will be a key growth platform that we’ll build along with our fast-growing pre-mixed highball products. We see tremendous opportunity to expand the OTR brand to new occasions, formats, cocktail recipes, and the low-ABV space.”
Spirits-based RTD is one of the fastest growing segments of the U.S. RTD market, and sales for On The Rocks Premium Cocktails doubled in the first six months of 2020. Among the brand’s signature cocktail products are the Knob Creek® Old Fashioned, Hornitos® Margarita, EFFEN® Cosmopolitan and Cruzan® Mai Tai. The brand is currently distributed primarily in the U.S. and Canada.
On the Rocks was co-founded in 2015 by Patrick Halbert, an entrepreneur and restauranteur, and Rocco Milano, a bartender, who started out by experimenting with spirits in a garage. Halbert and Milano came up with a concept to develop and bottle premium-quality cocktails with all-natural ingredients. In 2016, they began establishing partnerships to capture occasions such as air travel, hotel room service, and major sporting events. Halbert and Milano will continue to play leading roles with the brand as it joins the Beam Suntory portfolio.
“On The Rocks is extremely proud of what we’ve accomplished and the leadership position we’ve built in this rapidly growing sector over the last five years,” said Patrick Halbert. “We are thrilled to join the Beam Suntory family, its world-class portfolio of premium brands, and its tremendous people. With our combined expertise in delivering quality and premium products, we’re confident that this is just the beginning as we pursue market leadership and delight consumers with high-quality premium cocktails in convenient formats.”
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
About Beam Suntory
As a world leader in premium spirits, Beam Suntory inspires human connections. Consumers from all corners of the globe call for the company’s brands, including the iconic Jim Beam and Maker’s Mark bourbon brands, Suntory whisky Kakubin and Courvoisier cognac, as well as world renowned premium brands including Knob Creek, Basil Hayden’s and Legent bourbon; Yamazaki, Hakushu, Hibiki and Toki Japanese whisky; Teacher’s, Laphroaig and Bowmore Scotch whisky; Canadian Club whisky; Hornitos and Sauza tequila; EFFEN, Haku and Pinnacle vodka; Sipsmith and Roku gin; and Midori liqueur.
Beam Suntory was created in 2014 by combining the world leader in bourbon and the pioneer in Japanese whisky to form a new company with a deep heritage, passion for quality, innovative spirit and vision of Growing for Good. Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Beam Suntory is a subsidiary of Suntory Holdings Limited of Japan. For more information on Beam Suntory, its brands, and its commitment to social responsibility, please visit www.beamsuntory.com and www.drinksmart.com.
About On The Rocks Premium Cocktails
On The Rocks Cocktails (OTR) was founded in 2015 when restauranteurs Patrick Halbert and Rocco Milano, left the world of fine dining and embarked upon creating a line of craft-made bottled cocktails. Andrew Gill joined soon after and the three began designing ready-to-serve cocktails using only the most premium natural ingredients – from recipe to manufacturing. The founders pioneered in experiences and places where a bartender was not available, and elevated beverage options in settings where convenience is in demand.
OTR Cocktails made a name for itself early in the field with premium collaborations in the airline and hotel industry. The team’s constant search for premiumization lead to a partnership in 2018 with Beam Suntory, utilizing their top-shelf brand name spirits in OTR Cocktails. The strong foundation built on-premise accounts and helped pave the path for the brand to expand nationally in 2019 with the co-branded cocktails. Life doesn't wait for the bar; some moments call for a complex drink in an unconventional setting. On The Rocks Cocktails was crafted to rise to your occasion and bring the bar you. On The Rocks Cocktails is committed to continued innovation for the modern cocktail consumer – now available across the U.S. For more information visit www.ontherockscocktails.com.
© 2020 Beam Suntory, Inc., Merchandise Mart, 222 W. Merchandise Mart Plaza, Suite 1600, Chicago, IL 60654