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Brown-Forman Sees Sales Rise 11% to Over $2 Billion, with Operating Income Up 8%

December 7, 2022

For its fiscal first half, Brown-Forman reported that net sales jumped 11% to $2.1 billion, with Jack Daniel’s, Woodford Reserve, and the company’s RTD portfolio leading the way. Operating income also rose, with the company posting an 8% rise to $656 million. Growth was widespread across the company’s largest whiskey labels, with Jack Daniel’s, Woodford Reserve, and Old Forester all showing substantial growth to boost the company’s overall half.

Jack Daniel’s, led by gains from its core Tennessee whiskey label, was up 9% on a net basis and, according to Brown-Forman, those gains were seen across the U.S. and travel retail channels. The rise in net sales was also driven by price increases and a bump in distributor inventory during the half. Additionally, the company noted that the launch of Jack Daniel’s Bonded series of whiskies was a boon for the brand, alongside continued growth for its flavored whiskies—namely Tennessee Honey and Tennessee Fire—and RTDs.

Brown-Forman’s higher-end whiskies continue to surge as well, with the company reporting a 39% leap in net sales for its premium Bourbons, led by Old Forester and Woodford Reserve. This surge was attributed to continuing premiumization as well as the increased availability of glass for the distiller.

While RTDs are growing globally, Brown-Forman reported especially strong performances in Australia and Germany, helping to propel the Jack Daniel’s RTD portfolio to a 9% net sales jump. In Tequila, el Jimador and Herradura continue to see growth as well, with the former’s net sales up 16% and the latter rising 9%.

Overall, Brown-Forman saw net sales rise 11% in the U.S., led by Jack Daniel’s and Woodford Reserve’s successes, somewhat offset by headwinds faced by Korbel California Champagne. Outside the U.S., Spain, Korea, and Canada were strong performers in Brown-Forman’s established markets, with emerging markets like Brazil and Mexico also helping the company. Travel retail, which has bounced back since the worst days of the pandemic, was up 60% as well.

“Brown-Forman has once again displayed tremendous resolve, delivering double-digit revenue growth for the first half of fiscal 2023,” said president and CEO Lawson Whiting. “Consumer demand for our brands remains strong, and we have set the organization on a path for continued growth with our sustained brand investments, recently announced acquisitions, product innovation, and strategic relationships.”

Brown-Forman—Top Ten Spirits Brands In the U.S.
Rank Brand Origin/Type Total 2021
Depletions1
Control States
Volume Growth
YTD2
1 Jack Daniel’s3 Tennessee Whiskey 5,570 -1.8%
2 Woodford Reserve4 Bourbon 1,119 8.6%
4 El Jimador Tequila 848 -4.7%
3 Jack Daniel’s
Tennessee Honey
Flavored Whiskey 793 -6.8%
5 Gentleman Jack Tennessee Whiskey 458 -7.3%
6 Old Forester5 Bourbon 378 4.9%
7 Herradura Tequila 363 -8.3%
8 Jack Daniel’s
Tennessee Fire
Flavored Whiskey 356 -4.5%
9 Korbel American Brandy 273 -9.4%
10 Jack Daniel’s RTDs6 Premixed Cocktails 260 196.6%
Total Top Ten 10,418 -0.2%
Total Brown-Forman7 11,052 -1.0%
1 Thousands of 9-liter cases.
2 Year-to-date through October.
3 Excludes flavors and RTDs/FMBs; includes Single Barrel, Rye, No. 27 Gold, and Sinatra.
4 Includes Double Oaked and Reserve Rye.
5 Includes 86 proof, 100 proof, and craft.
6 Excludes Country Cocktails (malt-based).
7 Excludes wine and FMBs.

Sources: NABCA and IMPACT DATABANK © 2022
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