From George Clooney to Justin Timberlake: Celebrities With Tequila Labels
5:33 AM PDT 6/21/2013 by Patrick Comiskey
It’s not just an "Entourage" plot point anymore, as the "Gravity" actor and "Suit and Tie" singer become the latest Hollywood stars to create their own agave brand in the hope of hitting that $100 million payday.
This year, George Clooney and nightlife entrepreneur Rande Gerber (with real estate developer Mike Meldman) debuted Casamigos, named for Clooney’s and Gerber’s adjacent properties in Cabo San Lucas.
Clooney and Gerber's Casamigos
Casamigos’ tagline: "Brought to You by Those Who Drink It." $48-$50
Inset: Gerber, left, and Clooney
Justin Timberlake's 901 Silver
In July, when Timberlake launches a summer tour, 901 will be cross-promoted; consumers will have a chance to win tour tickets (where legal) through the 901 website. Timberlake also has promoted the brand to his 21 million Twitter followers. “We should all believe in something,” he tweeted in the fall. “I believe it’s time for another shot of tequila. … happy @901Silver day everybody!”
Sammy Hagar's Cabo Wabo
"Not only is it a fun drink, but the depletions (i.e. product turnover) are crazy," says former Van Halen frontman Sammy Hagar, credited with first hitching horses to this bandwagon during the '90s when he founded Cabo Wabo tequila. His competitors look with awe at his success: Campari Group purchased a controlling interest in 2007 and bought Hagar out three years later in deals said to total $100 million.
Xzibit's Bonita Platinum
Chris Brown, a Phoenix real estate developer, founded Bonita Platinum in 2010. It’s sold in a crystal bottle set in a satin-lined black box. "We wanted to produce a luxury item that American consumers could embrace," says Brown. "No sombreros, no scorpions." Early on, Brown sent a bottle to rap star Xzibit, whom he’d seen in a music video extolling the virtues of — what else? — Patron Silver. "A few days later," says Brown, "I got a tweet from Xzibit saying, 'This beats Patron handsdown, for real.' " Soon after, Xzibit became an active partner in Bonita Platinum. "If we didn’t have the support of Xzibit, all I’d get is a slap in the face," says Brown. "Instead, I’m going to distribution meetings."
Bob Pittman's Casa Dragones
In 2009, Pittman launched Casa Dragones, which at $275 a bottle ranks as the category’s priciest. "Everything we’ve done with the brand is geared toward making this a sipping tequila, like scotch,” says Pittman of his remarkably silky Casa Dragones.
West Hollywood's DeLeon
Opened in 2012, it’s a multi-use space housing corporate offices for 5-year-old DeLeon tequila, a chandelier-lit private events space and a showroom for its bottling, which costs $125 to as much as $825 (for a suave reserve called Leona so polished it might pass for Cognac). “It is a little mysterious,” admits DeLeon executive manager Courtney Carroll. "People show up knocking at the door and want to know, 'What is this?' " Those in the know who have thrown bashes there include The Weinstein Co. and Diana Ross.