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Combs Cedes Ciroc and DeLeon in Diageo Settlement, Ending Legal Dispute

Diddy helping launch CirocVodka Spritz in a 2022 campaign.
Sean "Diddy" Combs has reached a settlement with Diageo, the London-based spirits giant, concluding a legal battle that spanned seven months. The agreement, announced on Tuesday, results in Diageo taking sole ownership of Ciroc vodka and DeLeon tequila, brands previously endorsed by Combs.

In a joint statement, both parties declared that "Mr. Combs has withdrawn all of his allegations about Diageo and will voluntarily dismiss his lawsuits against Diageo with prejudice. Diageo and Mr. Combs have no ongoing business relationship, either with respect to Ciroc Vodka or DeLeĆ³n Tequila, which Diageo now solely owns."

While the specific financial terms of the settlement remain undisclosed, the resolution follows Combs' accusations against Diageo, including claims of racist tactics and negligence in promoting and investing in his spirits. The Supreme Court of New York had initially rejected Diageo's attempt to dismiss Combs' claims.

Combs, who entered a promotional deal for Ciroc in 2007 and later acquired DeLeon with Diageo in 2013, alleged that the company failed to fulfill promised investments and treated the brands as inferior "urban" products. The neglect reportedly intensified after Diageo acquired competing tequila brands, Don Julio in 2014 and Casamigos in 2017.

In addition to financial grievances, Combs accused Diageo of racism, claiming that the company restricted distribution to racially defined "urban" neighborhoods and harbored resentment for his financial success. Diageo vehemently denied these allegations, dismissing them as "false and reckless."

The legal dispute had broader implications beyond the spirits industry, impacting Combs' public image, which has faced multiple legal challenges in recent months. In November 2023, former girlfriend Cassie Ventura (R&B singer Cassie) filed a $30 million lawsuit accusing Combs of rape, sex trafficking, and abuse, which was settled for an undisclosed sum.

Another lawsuit was filed by Joi Dickerson-Neal, alleging that Combs drugged, sexually assaulted, and filmed her in 1991 when she was a college student. Bad Boy Records and Bad Boy Entertainment are also listed as defendants. Combs denies these allegations.

A third woman, identified as Jane Doe, filed a lawsuit accusing Combs of sexual assault and revenge porn in the early 1990s, which he also denies.

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