SAN FRANCISCO, CA - J. Gary Shansby, founder and chairman of Partida Tequila (named 'the best tequila money can buy' by America's leading spirits expert Paul Pacult), announced today the additions of Michael Mondavi and Maurice Kanbar to the Partida Tequila Board of Directors. In addition to serving on the Partida Board, both Mr. Mondavi and Mr. Kanbar have made capital investments in Partida. Terms of the investments were not disclosed.
"I'm thrilled to have Michael and Maurice join me as partners and board members," said Mr. Shansby. “Their experience, marketing creativity and strong relationships in the spirits industry will be a huge help as we continue to grow Partida Tequila into one of the leading premium tequila brands in America today."
Michael Mondavi co-founded the Robert Mondavi Winery with his father, Robert Mondavi, in 1966. Since that time, he has worked in every aspect of the wine business from wine making to executive leadership, winning numerous accolades (including the Market Watch Executive of the Year in 1998 and the ‘Who's Who in Food and Wine' award from the James Beard Foundation in 1997) during his storied career. In 2003, Mr. Mondavi founded Folio Fine Wine Partners — an importer, agency and winegrower of quality wines from the world's premier and emerging wine regions — together with his wife Isabel, his son Rob and his daughter Dina.
"Just like a fine wine, producing a great tequila takes passion, commitment and a love of the earth — and you have to start with a superior agricultural product," said Mr. Mondavi. "Like the best wines in the world, premium tequila has a great heritage and a culture. After tasting Partida and discussing with Gary, I immediately saw the similarities between fine wine and tequila and became intrigued by the opportunity to get involved in the tequila business."
Maurice Kanbar, a San Francisco neighbor of Gary Shansby, is a noted inventor (he holds more than 32 patents), entrepreneur and philanthropist. In 1993 he created Skyy Vodka, designing the distinctive cobalt blue bottle and conceiving the name himself. Skyy Vodka was wildly successful, and in 2005 Mr. Kanbar sold the brand to Gruppo Campari. "I have known Gary Shansby for many years and I have absolute confidence in his immense talents as a brand builder," said Mr. Kanbar. "I'm happy to add my experience, industry relationships and ideas on spirits marketing to the success of the wonderful brand - Partida Tequila- that Gary has created."
"With new distributor relationships in place and Michael and Maurice on board, I am more confident than ever that Partida Tequila will continue to quickly gain market share and grow in popularity with America's tequila drinkers,"said Mr. Shansby. "2009, despite the challenges of the economy, promises to be an exciting year for Partida Tequila!"