Our history

The history of the LA MARTINIQUAISE is a true story of success which began in 1934 when French visionary Jean Cayard started selling wine and spirits in France.
It is a story of passion and entrepreneurship, of a dynamic and modern company that has ceaselessly grown in France and, for some years now, abroad, where it continues to write new chapters in its history.

1934

Jean Cayard founds LA MARTINIQUAISE, dedicated to the import and distribution of Rum.

1946

LA MARTINIQUAISE diversifies into the sale of Cognac, Calvados, Kirsch, Madeira, Port and Sweet Wines.

1956

Launch of PORTO CRUZ, which quickly becomes a market leader with a series of memorable advertising campaigns.

1960s

The Group experiences major growth:
“With the development of mass retail, we knew we were entering an exciting period of change that we wanted to be part of.” Jean Cayard

1969

Launch of the international Scotch Whisky brand LABEL 5.

1975

Acquisition of the Gran Cruz company in Portugal.

1976

Acquisition of the Armagnac SAINT-VIVANT.

1977

Acquisition of the Portuguese Madeira wine company JUSTINO HENRIQUES.

1987

Acquisition of the brand FLORANIS, the authentic Gras brothers anisette.

1993

The leading Rum and Cocktail company Bardinet joins the group, bringing its flagship brands NEGRITA, DILLON and OLD NICK.

2001

PORTO CRUZ becomes the No. 1 Port in the world.

2003

Acquisition of the prestigious Martinique AOC pure cane agricole rums SAINT JAMES and BALLY.
Acquisition of the Calvados distillery BUSNEL.

2004

Opening of the First Blending Company in Bathgate, Scotland, the maturation and bottling site for the Group’s Scotch Whiskies.
Inauguration of the new sweet wines site in Rivesaltes, France.

2005

Launch of LA MARTINIQUAISE Vietnam.

2007

Acquisition of GRANDES DISTILLERIES PEUREUX, a European leader in fruit eau-de-vie and owner of the brands GRIOTTINES and LA CIGOGNE.
Acquisition of a stake in Distillerie de la Tour.
Acquisition of C. Da Silva, the Port producer founded in 1862, known for the brands DALVA and PRESIDENTIAL and its exceptional COLHEITAS.

2008

Acquisition of the Scottish Single Malt Distillery GLEN MORAY in Elgin, Speyside.
POLIAKOV becomes the top-selling Vodka in France.

2009

Acquisition of the leading brands DUVAL, CASANIS and L’HÉRITIER-GUYOT, ST RAPHAËL, VALAURIA and the Gentian AVÈZE.
Acquisition of Bruggeman, Belgium’s top Genever producer.
Acquisition of REPAIRE DE BACCHUS, which today owns around 40 wine merchants in and around Paris.
Acquisition of the brand CARAIBOS, a fruit juice and nectar brand popular with bar professionals.

2011

POLIAKOV joins the millionaire’s club, selling over one million nine-litre cases worldwide per year. Acquisition of the MASSENEZ eau-de-vie distillery.
Acquisition of the SMEETS brand, the No. 1 Genever in Hasselt, further strengthening Bruggeman’s leading position.

2012

Acquisition of the company Quartier Français Spiritueux. The LA MARTINIQUAISE becomes the leader in non-alcoholic aperitifs, acquires the RIVIÈRE DU MÂT distillery on Reunion Island, and bolsters its European network with the Italian company Dilmoor.
Opening of the Espaço Porto Cruz, a multimedia centre celebrating PORTO CRUZ’s expertise and Portugal’s contemporary art.

2014

Acquisition of a stake in the Dutch group Inspirits (DUJARDIN, OLIFANT).
Acquisition of the online retail site WINE & CO.
Acquisition of the Spanish Gin brand GIRO.

2015

Acquisition of the Spanish Cava brand MONT MARÇAL and the Italian Prosecco wine brand PERLINO, further developing the Group’s portfolio of Sparkling Wines.
Acquisition of the Douro Valley vineyard Quinta de Ventozelo in Portugal.

2016

Acquisition of the company Mascarin on Reunion island and its eponymous Rum brand MASCARIN, with operations in the chocolate, sugar and Rum industries.

2017

Following the acquisition of shares in 2014, takeover of the entire Inspirits company, including the Genever brand OLIFANT, consolidating the LA MARTINIQUAISE’s position in the Netherlands.

2019

Acquisition of the iconic CUTTY SARK Scotch Whisky, a major step forward to accelerate our international expansion.
“This acquisition is a major step forward to accelerate our international expansion. It will further strengthen our position in Europe and boost our presence in key markets such as the US and Japan.” Jean-Pierre Cayard said

2020

Our story continues…