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Bacardi Remaking Its Flagship Rum Brand In New Global Repositioning Effort

November 18, 2013

Bacardi rum has unveiled a major repositioning, including a new global campaign emphasizing its 150-year heritage. Tagged “Untameable Since 1862,” Bacardi’s new campaign will run across TV, print, outdoor and digital. Offering snapshots of Bacardi’s history through Prohibition, its exile from Cuba and other challenging times, the ads encourage “Millennial consumers to pursue their passion no matter what.” The 30-, 60-, and 120-second TV spots will launch in the U.S. and Mexico November 20, followed by India and Australia in December and other markets in spring 2014.

Bacardi declined to reveal the budget behind the new effort, but told SND, “This campaign represents a significant spend. We’ve put ample resources behind this to ensure it has global resonance and impact.” The brand spent $43.1 million in measured media in the U.S. market last year (including a $9 million outlay on its Oakheart offshoot), according to Kantar Media, making it the biggest media spender among spirits brands. Patrón Tequila, in which Bacardi has a minority stake, ranked second at $38.7 million.

In addition to its new campaign, Bacardi is uniting its portfolio of light and dark rums under one look. The brand’s packaging is being updated with a new logo—with the current bat image being updated, inspired by hand-drawn Bacardi bat designs from the early 1900s—and a change in the Bacardi word mark to reflect an Art Deco stylized typeface.

The top rum brand both in the U.S. and globally, Bacardi’s global volume rose 1% to 19.8 million cases last year, according to Impact Databank, achieving a retail value of $2.61 billion. In the U.S., the brand inched ahead 0.5% to 9.5 million cases in 2012. Despite advancing by just 1.9% in the U.S. since 2008, Bacardi remains more than 3 million cases larger than its nearest rum rival in the market, Captain Morgan, and nearly 8 million cases larger than third-ranked Malibu.

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