On the latest news from the world of wine.
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The Absolut and Smirnoff maker is “stepping up activity pretty significantly” in 2010 after 18 months of reduced advertising and discounting, said Larry Schwartz, president of Diageo’s U.S. unit recently.
The amount of liquor sold by the company in North America fell 4 percent in the six months through December, while sales declined 6 percent as Diageo discounted more products and consumers bought cheaper varieties of its brands. The distiller generates about 40 percent of earnings in the US, where it reduced its marketing spending by 9 percent last year as total liquor sales in the market stagnated at $18.7 billion.