Talking Luxury and Louis XIII with Rémy Cointreau USA CEO Philippe Farnier

Louis XIII has been an innovate, forward-thinking brand since its creation by Paul Emile Remy Martin in 1874—yet it is also one that is firmly rooted in history. Connecting this divide was a welcome challenge for Philippe Farnier, the current chief executive officer of Rémy Cointreau USA and a member of the company’s global Executive Committee. Using the knowledge he gleaned from previous positions at Yves Saint Laurent Beauté and Parfums Christian Dior, Farnier helped to conceive the company’s latest effort, Legacy—a unique limited-edition decanter, hand-signed by the four living cellar masters. Only 500 bottles will be released internationally, each accompanied by an etched plaque displaying its unique identification number. Here, Farnier discusses the evolution of the brand and how it plans on continuing to leave its mark on the spirits industry.

Why is Legacy such an innovative move for the company?
One of the things that sets Louis XIII apart is the brand’s longstanding commitment to craftsmanship and mastery of time. Each decanter is the life achievement of generations of cellar masters. Legacy is an embodiment of the incredible history, bridging the past and the future.

Your current cellar master is the youngest the brand has ever had. Is his youth an asset?
Baptist Loiseau’s youthfulness brings a fresh perspective to our storied brand. For instance, as he works on projecting the brand into the next century, we are considering the impact that climate change could have on vineyards and, ultimately, on Louis XIII.

Louis XIII
Louis XIII Legacy is the first cognac of its kind to be hand-signed by four living cellar masters.

Have you found it challenging for the brand to move into a digital age?
Social media was a major component of our strategy for 100 Years: The Movie You Will Never See [a film starring John Malkovich and directed by Robert Rodriguez], an incredible, artistic, creative project, as it gave us the platform to share an inspirational work of art with people around the globe. A separate, but also strong, area of interest is e-retail, as it is an additional channel which makes our clients’ lives easier.

What initiatives have you employed as CEO to keep modern relevance, while still managing to sustain the brand’s integrity?
Louis XIII has debuted a string of innovative activations, such as the production of 100 Years; a limited-edition masterpiece in collabora- tion with Hermès, Puiforcat and Saint-Louis called l’Odyssee d’un Roi, which was auctioned for charity; and the opening of the world’s first- ever Louis XIII cognac boutique in Beijing.

Why is the product perfect for the L.A. market?
Los Angeles is the entertainment capital of the world so, from award shows to movie premieres, there is always a reason to celebrate. In a forward-thinking city like Los Angeles, where people are always searching for what’s new and what’s next, Louis XIII provides a chance to slow down, savor and appreciate the luxury of time, and think a century ahead.