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Jas Hennessy & Co.
Founded1765; 256 years ago (1765)
FounderRichard Hennessy
HeadquartersCognac, France
Area served
Key people
Laurent Boillot, Chairman & CEO; Boris de Vroomen, International Director
RevenueIncrease €954.2 million (2012)
OwnerLVMH (66%)
Diageo (34%)

Jas Hennessy & Co., commonly known simply as Hennessy (French pronunciation: ​[ɛnɛsi]), is a French cognac distiller with its headquarters located in Cognac, France. Jas Hennessy & Co. sells about 50 million bottles a year worldwide, making it the largest cognac producer, supplying more than 40% of the world's cognac, a variety of brandy. The company is owned by Moët Hennessy, which is in turn owned by LVMH (66%) and Diageo (34%).


Richard Hennessy (1724–1800) founded the distillery in 1765
Brand ambassador Maurice Hennessy at a presentation of new cognac in 2011

The Hennessy cognac distillery was founded by Irish Jacobite military officer Richard Hennessy in 1765.[1] His son James Hennessy gave the company its name Jas Hennessy & Co in 1813.[2] During the 1970s, Kilian Hennessy, a fifth-generation direct descendant of Hennessy, became the CEO of Hennessy, succeeding his first cousin Maurice-Richard. Kilian Hennessy spearheaded the company's 1971 merger with Moët et Chandon, which created Moët Hennessy.[3]

Moët Hennessy merged with Louis Vuitton in 1987, creating one of the world's largest luxury brand conglomerates, Louis Vuitton • Moët-Hennessy or LVMH. In 1988, a management crisis led to the group's takeover by Bernard Arnault, owner of the haute couture house Christian Dior, with the support of Guinness.[citation needed] Kilian Hennessy remained on the company's advisory board until his death in 2010 at the age of 103.[3]


Recently, Hennessy has tried to broaden the appeal of the drink beyond its traditional base of older drinkers by introducing new products such as "Pure White", "Hennessy Black"[4] and "Fine de Cognac" and marketing them accordingly.[5]


  • Hennessy V.S
  • Privilége V.S.O.P
  • Hennessy X.O
  • Hennessy X.X.O
  • Hennessy Master Blender's selection
  • Hennessy Paradis
  • Richard Hennessy
  • James Hennessy
  • Hennessy Paradis Imperial
  • Hennessy 8
  • Hennessy Timeless
  • Hennessy Ellipse
  • Hennessy Black
  • Hennessy Pure White
  • Hennessy Classivm

Collectors' bottles[edit]

Collector bottle Year released Description Notes
Hennessy VS "44" 2009 Honor of 44th president Barack Obama
Hennessy VS "NUL" 2010 National Urban League
Hennessy VS "BOA" 2010 Blending of Art (five different bottles with two designers per)
Hennessy VS "KAWS" 2011 New York graffiti artist KAWS design
Hennessy Fine De Cognac and Tea 2011 Tea House Maison de Thé Théodor
Hennessy VSOP Helios 2011 Gold Bottle (named after Greek god of sun)
Hennessy VSOP "NyX" 2011 Platinum bottle (label glows under black light)
Hennessy VSOP Kyrios 2012 Black bottle (3D label)
Hennessy VSOP Depuis 2013 Red bottle
Hennessy XO Odyssey 2007–11 Released every year since 2007 (2011 bottle sits on rock formation)
Hennessy Kenzo 1997–99 Fashion designer Kenzo (subsidiary of LVMH) [n 1]
Hennessy Red Book 2011 Levandovka filling
Hennessy X Futura 2012 New York graffiti artist Futura
Hennessy Luminous 2013 Brand name on label has luminous glow
Hennessy VS x Scott Campbell 2016
Hennessy VS x Jon One 2017
Hennessy VSOP x John Maeda 2017
Hennessy X.O x Marc Newson 2017
Hennessy VS x Vhils 2018
Hennessy VS x Felipe Pantone 2019

Hennessy Literary Awards[edit]

Hennessy sponsors the New Irish Writing competition in the Irish Independent, and the associated annual Hennessy Literary Award, that has launched such Irish writers as Joseph O'Connor, Dermot Bolger, Colm Ó Clúbhán, Patrick McCabe, Colum McCann, Frank McGuinness, Anne Enright, Hugo Hamilton, Dermot Healy and Neil Jordan.[6][7][8]

In popular culture[edit]

Hennessy is frequently referenced in popular music,[9] including "KC Tea" (2010) by Tech N9ne,[10] "Hennessey" (2004) by 2Pac,[11] "Hennesey n Buddah" (2000) by Snoop Dogg,[12] Hennessy by Kodoku (2021), "Love Scars" (2017) by Trippie Redd, "We Be Burnin'" (2005) by Sean Paul, "Boombayah" by Korean girl group Blackpink, "Hennessy" by Bloo[13][circular reference], Digital Underground's "The Humpty Dance", "Pass Me Da Green" by Master P (1997),[14] "Moodz" by Blackbear, "Red Bull & Hennessy"[15] by Jenny Lewis, "6 Inch" by Beyoncé, "Blame It" by Jamie Foxx, and the Mayer Hawthorne song "Henny & Gingerale".[16]

The cognac was notably mentioned in the chorus of the Drake single "One Dance" (2016),[17] which reached #1 on the Billboard Hot 100.[18]

Rap duo Mobb Deep wear Hennessy jerseys in their music video for their 1995 single Shook Ones (Part II).

Hennessy is the drink of choice for Blues musician Del Paxton in the movie That Thing You Do![19]

Notable consumers[edit]

Hennessy was the favourite drink of Kim Jong-il, former Supreme Leader of North Korea. Hennessy once reported that Kim spent over $700,000 a year on Paradis cognac.[20]


  1. ^ Produced for the Australian, Hong Kong, Indonesian, New Zealand, Singapore, Taiwan, and United States market. Around 18000 bottles were then produced, with the blue version launched in 1997 and the yellow one in 1999.


  1. ^ Time Inc (24 May 1937). LIFE. Time Inc. p. 64. ISSN 0024-3019.
  2. ^ "Hennessy, l'empire du cognac". France-Soir. 31 December 2014. Retrieved 22 April 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Cognac magnate Kilian Hennessy dies at 103". Agence France Presse. 3 October 2010. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
  4. ^ "Introducing Hennessy Black", cocktailenthusiast.com, 2 June 2010; retrieved 16 March 2011.
  5. ^ Hein, Kenneth. "Cognac is in the house", allbusiness.com, 22 September 2003; accessed 8 November 2014.
  6. ^ Vanessa O'Loughlin, "New Irish Writing", Writing.ie; accessed 8 November 2014.
  7. ^ "Your chance to join the ranks of our best writers", independent.ie, 24 March 2012.
  8. ^ "New home for New Irish Writing and the Hennessy Award" Archived 2016-03-04 at the Wayback Machine, Writing4all.ie; accessed 8 November 2014.
  9. ^ "Lyrics containing the term: hennessy". www.lyrics.com. Retrieved 2018-01-27.
  10. ^ Tech N9ne – KC Tea, retrieved 2018-01-27
  11. ^ 2Pac (Ft. Obie Trice) – Hennessey, retrieved 2018-01-27
  12. ^ Snoop Dogg (Ft. Kokane) – Hennesey N Buddah, retrieved 2018-01-27
  13. ^ Bloo (rapper)
  14. ^ Master P – Pass Me Da Green, retrieved 2019-12-10
  15. ^ Jenny Lewis – Red Bull & Hennessy, retrieved 2019-04-09
  16. ^ Mayer Hawthorne – Henny & Gingerale, retrieved 2020-11-18
  17. ^ Drake (Ft. Kyla & Wizkid) – One Dance, retrieved 2017-12-25
  18. ^ McIntyre, Hugh. "Drake's 'One Dance' Was Officially The Biggest Song On The Planet In 2016". Forbes. Retrieved 2017-12-25.
  19. ^ "A Hennessey for Del Paxton". Yarn. Retrieved 2020-10-09.
  20. ^ Paul Fischer (2015). A Kim Jong-Il Production: The Extraordinary True Story of a Kidnapped Filmmaker, His Star Actress, and a Young Dictator's Rise to Power. Flatiron Books. p. 169.