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Raising A Toast To India

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Luxury spirits firm Moët Hennessy, part of the LVMH Group, has been in India since 2001 and its brand
portfolio includes brands such as Dom Pérignon, Moët & Chandon, Krug (champagne), Ardbeg, Glenmorangie (single malt), Belvedere (Vodka), Chandon (sparkling wine), Cloudy Bay (wine) and Hennessy (cognac).

Stéphane deMeurville, Managing Director, Moët Hennessy India talks about the evolving tastes of the Indian consumer and why India is one of the priority markets in Asia Pacific for the company.


Q:What is on top of your agenda for Moët Hennessy India?

We have a fantastic portfolio of beautiful brands, and we are the best at crafting experiences. From Chandon India to Richard Hennessy, we have something special for everyone.

Q: How important is India as a market for Moët Hennessy?

The Indian market is dynamic, with an evolving profile of luxury consumers and millennials with higher buying power, which poises India as one of the priority markets in Asia Pacific. The Indian consumer is trading up across segments and categories and these are exciting times for the Indian luxury consumer. There is also a visible trend with a lot more women now consuming wines and spirits, and thereby becoming an important part of
our target consumers.

Q: What has been the uptick in the consumption of wine in the country?

The Indian consumers today, are more health conscious, and actively seeking healthier lifestyle choices (for e.g. – lower alcohol beverages), this trend is helping wine consumption in particular. Also, with more players coming
into this category, it is benefitting all brands. Quality should now take precedence over quantity
and this is also a noticeable demand from the consumer.

Q: What are the biggest challenges you face?

The biggest challenge we face is regulation & taxation. India has one of the highest import duties in the world and with each state having a different excise policy (which often differs widely from each other), these challenges are unique to India and quite different from any other Asian markets.

Q: Which are your biggest markets?

The major metropolitan cities of Mumbai, Delhi NCR & Bangalore are key markets for all our brands. With regard to
Hennessy in specific, Chennai, Goa & Hyderabad are key markets as well.

Q: What has been your growth like? Looking ahead, what is the growth opportunity you see?

We have seen the growth of the Indian market and the evolution of the Indian consumer over the past years. The Indian consumer today travels extensively, actively seeks and values novel experiences, and is very strongly
connected digitally, through social media and mobile internet. There is now a growing consumer base with the propensity to indulge but still wanting a real value proposition. With the rising young millennial population and growing disposable incomes, there are immense opportunities for Moët Hennessy India.

Q: Are you looking at looking at launching new offerings?

We have very exciting news for Hennessy, with the re-introduction of the jewel of our collection –
the Hennessy Paradis Impérial, in India. The Hennessy Paradis Impérial is a Cognac of absolute subtlety and
delicacy representing the apex of the Master Blender’s quest, and we at Moët Hennessy India are delighted to bring this offering to the Indian consumer.

Published in the November-December 2018 issue of Pitch Magazine

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