French alcoholic beverage firm Pernod Ricard has invested Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto, maker of bergamot-infused aperitivo.

The investment in the Italian brand is part of the French group’s strategy to expand its portfolio of premium speciality spirits.

Pernod Ricard, the world’s second-largest spirits group behind Diageo, did not reveal the size of its investment.

Created by Italian spirits expert Giuseppe Gallo, Italicus a liquor with 20% alcohol by volume (ABV).

On average, the liquor, which comes in a blue-green bottle, sells for €30 per 70 cl bottle.

Gallo said: “Since its launch, the brand has experienced success with both the on-trade and consumers, and it is now time to consolidate with this heavyweight strategic partner in order to accelerate our global distribution.

“We have an ambitious plan to build Italicus into one of the world’s most successful aperitivo brands.”

Gallo will remain the active CEO in the brand’s ongoing development, Pernod Ricard said in a press statement.

Commenting on the deal, Pernod Ricard EMEA-LatAm chairman & CEO Gilles Bogaert said: “Italicus has experienced a remarkable start, resonating with mixologists and consumers. We are thrilled to add Italicus to the Pernod Ricard portfolio and for the Group to help drive its future development.”

The deal with Italicus follows the recent partnerships including Monkey 47, Smooth Ambler West Virginian whiskey, Del Maguey mezcal, Rabbit Hole bourbon and Japanese gin KI NO BI.