Innovation and heritage packaged and on display for Hennessy

There are few things as precious as a first-born child, so when Hennessy Cognac released a new Cognac named after James Hennessy, the first-born child of founder Richard Hennessy, it was bound to be a very special drink. Fittingly, such an exceptional cognac also has an exceptional packaging thanks to the packaging strategists at DS Smith.


Develop a packaging suitably refined and distinctive for a cognac of exceptional standing  launched and positioned between VSOP and XO cognacs, a segment in which Hennessy was not yet present.   

Our Approach

DS Smith’s packaging strategists in Rochechouart, France, set out to create an innovative deluxe-box with all of the advantages of a rigid box at a very economical price. With its bottom part in corrugated cardboard and its flap in solid board, the James deluxe-box is an atypical concept between the folding carton and the deluxe-box with all the characteristics of a rigid box – except that it's lighter and less expensive. The front panel can be folded backwards with a top hinge allowing it to slot seamlessly with the back panel, effectively turning the James deluxe-box into a display box. It has all the typical high quality finishing one would expect (hot stamping, embossing…) and contains a tab for easy opening. 

To ensure the manufacturing of the expected quantities of the James deluxe-box, a specific production line has been set up at the Rochechouart plant.


  • More sales thanks to prominent and eye-catching packaging in a competitive environment (Duty Free sales in the world’s largest 25 airports) amongst the most exceptional bottles, special editions and the large formats of the prestigious brand.
  • Lower cost thanks to unique blending of corrugated and solid board in construction
  • In-store flexibility thanks to incorporated display function
  • Distinctive packaging that maintains crucial brand values through the precision use of high quality techniques such as hot stamping, embossing and a tab for easy opening


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