Diageo plc is a multinational alcoholic drinks and foods business listed on the London Stock Exchange. The company was formed from the merger of Guinness plc and Grand Metropolitan plc.
Diageo is the holding company for the worldwide brewing interests of Guinness, some leading international drinks brands such as Smirnoff, Captain Morgan, Crown Royal, J & B, Seagram 7 Crown, VO, Johnny Walker, Tanqueray and Baileys, Sterling Vineyards, Beaulieu Vineyards and operates the Scottish whisky distilleries of Blair Athol, Caol Ila, Cardow, Clynelish, Cragganmore, Dalwhinnie, Glenkinchie, Glen Ord, Lagavulin, Oban, Royal Lochnagar and Talisker. It is also a distributor of Jose Cuervo.
In December 2003 Diageo provoked controversy over its decision to change its Cardhu brand scotch whisky from a single malt to a pure malt whilst retaining the original name and bottle style. This move was necessitated by the popularity of the brand, especially in Spain which exceeding the supply that could be produced as single malt. Industry opponents and drink commentators said the move could confuse drinkers and damage the reputation of the scotch whisky industry. After a meeting of producers Diageo promised to make changes.