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Pernod Ricard exploring sale of wine division

French spirits-maker Pernod Ricard SA has held early discussions for a possible sale of its wine unit, Bloomberg News reported March 13, citing anonymous sources.

The wine division, which includes Australia's Jacob's Creek and Spain's Campo Viejo labels, reportedly has sales of about $500 million.

Discussions are at an early stage, and may not lead to a sale, the news outlet reported.

The company did not immediately respond to S&P Global Market Intelligence's request for comment.

Pernod Ricard is under pressure from activist hedge fund Elliott Management Corp. to improve its performance. Elliott Management disclosed a 2.5% stake in Pernod Ricard in December 2018.

According to Bloomberg, Pernod Ricard started evaluating options for the wine unit before being targeted by the hedge fund.

The Paris-based company told Bloomberg that the company "is under no external pressure and has already mentioned several times that it intends to continue the dynamic management of its portfolio."