Top wines and spirits purchased by affluent consumers in 2008.
Top wines and spirits purchased by affluent consumers in 2008.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $84; Average amount spent in 2007: $57 Bacardi, the family-owned spirits conglomerate, launched Bacardi Dragon Berry, a strawberry rum infused with Dragon fruit. Flavored rum is resonating with consumers, including concoctions such as Bacardi Peach Red, Grand Melon and Coconut. Malibu, owned by French spirits giant Pernod Ricard, is the number-one coconut-flavored rum in the world, selling 3.7 million cases in more than 150 countries. Premium liquors firm Diageo successfully launched Captain Morgan 100 and got a boost from the performance by Captain Morgan Spiced Rum in the year ending June 30, with share gains in North America, which represents 90 percent of the brand’s net sales.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $364; Average amount spent in 2007: $314 Ketel One’s performance was ahead of expectations in its first year under Diageo ownership. The company paid family-owned distiller The Nolet Group $900 million for a 50 percent stake in the vodka last year. With more than 11 million cases sold worldwide, Pernod Ricard is experiencing a growth burst with its 2008 acquisition of Swedish company Vin & Sprit. Pernod Ricard reported 51 percent growth in the Americas because of the integration of Absolut and a favorable exchange rate. This has been a big year for flavored vodka with launches of Finlandia Tangerine Fusion, Skyy Infusions Pineapple, Belvedere Black Raspberry, Jeremiah Weed Sweet Tea and Three Olives Bubble — a bubble gum-flavored vodka.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $245; Average amount spent in 2007: $224 Champagne remains a staple at weddings and parties. “You pop the cork on that and it instantly transforms the ordinary into something better,” Danziger said. High-end Champagne has taken a hit as consumers trade down, with Moët Hennessy, the wine and spirits division of the world’s largest luxury goods company, LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, seeing sales slide by 17 percent in the first half of 2009 because of destocking by distributors. Perrier-Jouët was down 11 percent for the year ending June 30, due to the challenging U.S. market.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $749; Average amount spent in 2007: $690 “Wine is the drink of choice for affluent shoppers,” Danziger said. The 2004 movie wine-themed “‘Sideways’ is still continuing to generate sales,” she said. While Pinot Noir reigned in the movie, in real life Bordeaux is booming with demand up for Lafite Rothschild, Carruades de Lafite and Mouton Rothschild, according to the Liv-ex 100 Fine Wine Index, a U.K., -based wine exchange with 240 member merchants and funds. Looking to spend less than $5,300 for a case of 2002 Lafite Rothschild? “Luxury consumers are trading down to less expensive choices because cheap bargain wine is getting better and better,” Danziger said.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $162; Average amount spent in 2007: $158 “Single malt imported from Scotland has been good,” Danziger said. The Glenlivet, owned by Pernod Ricard, is the top malt whiskey in the U.S. and sales grew 7 percent in the year ending June 30. Johnnie Walker, Diageo’s best known global premium drink brand, took a hit from a reduction in business entertaining and travel, which led to a decline in sales through travel retail outlets. This month, Johnnie Walker Black Label will release a special collectors’ edition black bottle of signature 12-year-old whiskey honoring the famed brand’s 100th anniversary.
OTHER WINE, LIQUOR & SPIRITS
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $221; Average amount spent in 2007: $218 As consumers seek premium spirits to replace more expensive ultra and super premium segments, Diageo has benefited with share gains on Jose Cuervo Gold for the year ending June 30. A successful launch of Jose Cuervo Silver led to volume growth and a 27 percent net sales gain. Baileys had a 3 percent increase in net sales for Diageo, while the weakness of the North American market proved difficult for Tanqueray gin even though the brand grew in Europe and Asia Pacific. Patrón, Bombay Sapphire and Don Julio were other top mentions in the category for top spirit brands purchased for both home and restaurant consumption.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $87; Average amount spent in 2007: $90 In 1964, during President Lyndon B. Johnson’s administration, Congress declared bourbon America’s Native Spirit. Kentucky produces 90 to 95 percent of the world’s supply and bourbon is the state’s leading export. Brands include Wild Turkey and Jim Beam, the world’s number-one selling bourbon. Knob Creek made news in July for a supply shortage leaving loyal consumers without their crutch until November. Double-digit growth fueled demand far exceeding early 2000 forecasts and the nation’s top-selling superpremium Bourbon requires a nine-year, four-char barrel aging process.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $120; Average amount spent in 2007: $123 About 1.5 million glasses of Jameson are enjoyed around the world every day. That’s about 20 glasses a second. The brand’s heritage dates to 1780 when John Jameson founded his distillery in Bow Street, Dublin. Lynchburg, Tenn.-based Jack Daniel’s is a bit younger — the man behind the liquor would have turned 159 years old this month. His name is as deeply ingrained as Jameson’s with liquor, barbecue and steak sauces bearing the label. Last year Beam Global Spirits & Wine Co., based in Deerfield, Ill., introduced (ri)1 (pronounced “rye one”), its first ultrapremium rye whiskey.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $113; Average amount spent in 2007: $134 The after-dinner drink category has taken a hit with fewers corporate dinner parties and events. “Also, it’s associated with cigar smoking,” Danziger said. “Laws against smoking have impacted the purchase of these.” Port is a Portuguese fortified wine from the Douro Valley in the northern provinces of Portugal, made mostly with red grapes. Sherry is a fortified wine made from white grapes that are grown near Jerez, Spain. After a decade of intense research, legendary port producer Fonseca is introducing new vats designed to increase quality of all nonvintage port wines.
Average amount spent by each luxury consumer in 2008: $64; Average amount spent in 2007: $86 While North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il is said to have a penchant for Hennessy, Americans have apparently put theirs on hold. “Cognac was really hot a couple of years ago by the urban and young people, and they’ve been the most heavily impacted,” Danziger said. “They don’t have the money to go out anymore.” Rémy Martin is putting money behind Rémy Chill and is promoting Rémy Ice Boxx parties where Rémy Martin V.S.O.P is chilled and served in shot glasses at hip clubs and bars.
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