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While RumChata Keeps Rising, Baileys Tries To Keep Edge With New Initiatives

December 23, 2014

Repeating trends from last year’s holiday season, RumChata continues to advance quickly across the U.S. market, while Baileys is attempting to fend off its upstart rival with new product and advertising activity.

In recent weeks, Diageo unveiled a new flavor extension for the 17%-abv Baileys: Cherry Chocolate Irish Cream. Geared toward the shot occasion, the new offering reinforces the repositioning of Baileys as a stylish female brand. So too does the cream liqueur’s new “Here’s To Us” ad campaign, which targets millennial women with images of females in that demographic getting together for nights out. Created by BBH London, the spots recently began rolling out in the U.S. and Europe.

Baileys remains by far the U.S. market’s top-selling cream liqueur brand. However, it’s struggled in recent years. The brand’s volume expanded by more than 30% from 2000-2005 to reach nearly 1.3 million cases, according to Impact Databank. Since then, it has basically been stuck in neutral. In 2013, Baileys was flat at 1.28 million cases, and it doesn’t appear to be faring any better in 2014. For the 12 months ending October 31, 2014, Baileys was down by 1.2% to roughly 220,000 cases in control states, according to NABCA. In IRI channels, the Diageo brand declined by 2.8% to just under 260,000 cases in the 52 weeks through November.

Meanwhile, Rumchata’s rapid rise continues. After enjoying a 26% bump to 460,000 cases last year, the Agave Loco-marketed brand saw sales increase by 25% to approximately 85,000 cases in control states for the 12 months ending October 31. In IRI channels, RumChata rose by almost 30% to around 90,000 cases.

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