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Antiquated marketing practices and fraud on the agenda at Pernod Ricard

Published:  15 February, 2017

Pulling its marketing in-house and tackling fraud via a major change to its bottling practices were the two major announcements to be implemented by the French spirits giant in the coming weeks.

Pulling its marketing in-house and tackling fraud via a major change to its bottling practices are two major changes to be implemented by Pernod Ricard in the coming weeks.

The French spirits giant announced a number of operational shifts at yesterday's roundtable focusing on its H1 2017 interim results.

Chairman and chief executive Alexandre Ricard reveled plans to build in-house media expertise rather than relying on agencies, issuing a stern warning to the industry that brands "cannot rely on third parties to know their customers".

The group also confirmed it would be using QR coded bottles across all of its brands from now on, offering a "direct, digital touch point" for consumers.

The QR (quick response) codes will allow consumers to access more information via their smartphones and will also help in the fight against counterfeit practices, the group said.

"Being able to trace a bottle and make sure it is a true authentic product is important, especially in some emerging markets where you have counterfeit issues," said Ricard, who went on to highlight the opportunities to connect consumers with the provenance of the product and also provide increased nutritional information.

"There is a legitimate demand from consumers where traceability is concerned, where they want to know more and more about a brand ? the whole supply chain, provenance and therefore a whole story," he said.

By scanning QR codes with their smartphones, consumers are able to access more information about the product.

They are directed to an app or website, where space is not an issue compared to the limited space on back labels.

As well as more information, Ricard said the content would become more detailed:

"All of our brands already have websites with a lot of information. What you can expect is that information to become more detailed and interesting and insightful as we enrich the content."