The world’s 10 largest rum brands

24th June, 2013 by Becky Paskin

From Puerto Rico to Cuba and the Philippines, the world’s best rum comes from many a country, but which are the world’s largest rum brands?


The mojito is our favourite cocktail, but which is the world’s largest rum brand?

The original party spirit is one of the world’s largest spirit categories and is showing no signs of slowing down, with a17% rise in global rum volumes predicted between 2011 and the end of 2016.

The same can be said for most of the rum brands included in our list of the world’s largest by volume (those that responded to requests for information). We’ve included both international and domestic brands in this run down, but while some massive volume increases were reported from the domestic brands, only two international rums that sell over 1m cases annually reported positive growth.

As reported in The Spirits Business in February, it would seem the rum category is breaking free of its party image and moving toward a more premium product with spiced varieties pushing the brands forward.

Last week we listed the world’s largest Scotch and vodka brands as we coun down the days to the publication of our 2013 Brand Champions online on 8 July – our pick of those brands selling over a million cases that have outperformed their respective categories.

Click through the following pages to discover which are the world’s largest rum brands.

10. Montilla


2012 case sales: 1.7m
2011 case sales: 1.7m
Growth in 2012: 0%

Pernod Ricard’s less famous rum Montilla, whose sales come predominantly from Brazil, has had a stagnant year with sales not shifting from 1.7m cases. The brand has struggled to see volume return to the 2.7m cases seen before the recession.

9. Madiraa

Madiraa Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 2m
2011 case sales: 1.4m
Growth in 2012: 43%

India’s Tilaknagar Industries has reported record growth for its Madiraa Premium Dark XXX Rum in 2012, with case sales soaring up by 43%, making it the fastest-growing spirit in our 2013 Brand Champions list.

8. Cacique

Cacique Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 2.1m
2011 case sales: 1.7m
Growth in 2012: 24%

First launched in 1959, Diageo-owned Cacique – meaning ‘chief of the tribe’ in Spanish – counts Spain and Venezuela as its core markets, being the number one-selling rum in the latter. Its impressive 24% growth in 2012 follows four years of pretty much flat sales.

7. Contessa

Contessa Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 2.4m
2011 case sales: 2.4m
Growth in 2012: 0%

Despite owning a 25% market share of the Indian defence segment, Contessa XXX Rum, owned by India’s Radico Khaitan group, has failed to see any growth in the past 12 months.

6. Havana Club

Havana-Club Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 3.8m
2011 case sales: 3.8m
Growth in 2012: 0%

Havana Club, one of the biggest names in the rum industry worldwide – and the core ingredient for the world’s favourite cocktail, the mojito – has continued to see sales remain flat for the past three years. The rejection of brand owner Pernod Ricard’s appeal to renew its trademark of the Havana Club name in the US in May 2012 came as a massive blow for the brand this year. With Bacardi now selling its own Havana Club brand in the States, Pernod has been forced to create a new brand name for its Cuban rum – Havanista, for when the US trade embargo on Cuban goods is lifted.

5. Brugal

Brugal Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 3.9m
2011 case sales: 4m
Growth in 2012: -3%

The number one rum brand in the Caribbean and Spain has continued its steady volume decline since 2010, this year falling by 3%. Majority-owned by Edrington, which acquired around 60% of the business in 2008, has released two new expressions under the Burgal brand in recent months. First upu was Brugal Extra Dry – its first premium white rum offering – in July 2012, aimed specifically at the US market. Second up was the more recent Brugal Papa Andres, a super-premium US$1,200 rum featuring liquid stored for over 100 years. Brugal’s innovation and more premium releases could turn the brand’s sales in a different direction come 2013’s financial results.

4. Captain Morgan

Captain-Morgan Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 10m
2011 case sales: 9.2m
Growth in 2012: 9%

The Captain struck gold this year when it hit the 10m case sales mark for the first time, becoming only the sixth international spirit brand to do so. Diageo’s new global marketing campaign for Captain Morgan – Live Like The Captain – has been rolling out across its core markets, encouraging consumers to have a little fun with the rum. Unusually for a spirit brand, Captain Morgan leads in each market with a spin-off expression, its popular Captain Morgan Spiced, flanked by its Original, Silver and Black Spiced variants. At such high case sales already, to achieve 9% growth is a huge achievement, and has been driven largely by sales in the US where it is the third largest spirit brand. However, the Captain still has some way to go to catch up to the world’s three largest rum brands.

3. Mc Dowell’s No. 1 Celebration

McDowells-No-1-Celebration-Rum Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 17.8m
2011 case sales: 15.6m
Growth in 2012: 14%

United Spirits’ leading rum brand has been steadily growing for the last five years, from 9.7m cases to 17.8m during that time. In 2012 its growth was a huge 14%, cementing the brand’s name in its core Indian market as a leade with around 50% market share. With such an outstanding growth rate, McDowell’s is in the running to overtake the world’s leading rum brand within the next few years.

2. Tanduay

Tanduay-Rum Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 19.6m
2011 case sales: 18.7m
Growth in 2012: 5%

While McDowell’s No.1 Celebration Rum may be gearing up to overtake the world’s leading rum brand in the next few years, Asian rum Tanduay may just achieve that goal in 2013. Just 0.2m cases behind the number one, Tanduay recently announced it would begin distribution in the US – one of the world’s leading rum markets – in the next few months.

1. Bacardi

Bacardi Worlds largest rum brands

2012 case sales: 19.8m
2011 case sales: 19.6m
Growth in 2012: 1%

Last year proved a milestone for Puerto Rican rum Bacardi as it celebrated its 150th anniversary with fervour. Its case sales meanwhile proved rather stagnant, with just a 1% growth rate achieved. Bacardi Oakheart, the brand’s spiced variant that came to market in 2011, has proved fruitful for the group, standing its ground as the sixth fastest growing spirit sold in the US in 2012, with an 85% increase in sales to 148,000 cases (according to Technomic). However, Bacardi Oakheart’s popularity may not be enough to drive the overall brand’s sales far enough in 2013 – it’s looking likely that Tanduay will overtake Bacardi as the world’s largest rum brand next year.

7 Responses to “The world’s 10 largest rum brands”

  1. Mike says:

    Really interesting facts, thanks for a great article!
    A question though – what is the definition of a “case”? How many litres would it be equivalent to?


  2. Clinton Wyness says:

    Thank you for the Rum info .

  3. nvn says:

    Where does old monk stand..

  4. Ramon Garcia says:

    Brugal is the 3rd largest rum. Why it is not mentions that it is a Dominican Rum?

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