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SPECIAL REPORT: Impact’s Top 100 Spirits Brands By Value List Features 22 Billionaire Brands

March 14, 2014

Impact’s exclusive report on the world’s most valuable spirits brands reveals that 22 brands generated retail sales value of more than $1 billion each in 2013.Diageo’s Johnnie Walker once again leads Impact’s top 100 spirits brands worldwide—by an enormous margin. The Scotch brand accrued nearly $6 billion in retail value last year on global sales of almost 20 million cases, according to Impact Databank. Stablemate Smirnoff, the number-two player, was nearly $2.5 billion behind.

In all, Diageo claims six of the 22 brands in the “billion-dollar” club, with Captain Morgan, Crown Royal, Baileys and Yeni (which Diageo added via its 2011 purchase of Turkey’s Mey Içki) also making the cut. Additionally, Diageo owns significant shares of two other billion-dollar brand marketers: it has a 34% stake in Moët Hennessy, owner of Hennessy Cognac, the third-highest value generator at more than $3 billion; and a 29% stake in United Spirits Ltd., the Indian spirits giant whose McDowell No. 1 whisky racked up nearly $2 billion in retail value last year on a marked volume gain.

In mid-2013, Diageo cut ties with another longtime billion-dollar brand, Jose Cuervo, when it ended its marketing alliance with the Tequila’s owner, Grupo Tequila Cuervo. After several years of volume declines, Jose Cuervo fell just shy of the billion-dollar threshold last year, finishing at approximately $995 million.

While Diageo led the value top-100 in dollar terms, archrival Pernod Ricard actually had the most top 100 entries, with 17 (compared to Diageo’s 14). Pernod had four billion-dollar brands in 2013—Absolut, Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s and Royal Stag—and it may soon have another. After achieving retail value of $920 million last year, fast-rising Jameson is on pace to join the billion-dollar club in the near future.

For the full Top 100 by Value list and analysis, see Impact’s March 1&15

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