Big spirits brands struggle against rise of craft

7th August, 2015 by Amy Hopkins

Established spirits brands are “struggling to compete” with craft players and face “fragmentation” in the market, new research has found.

"Promiscuous" consumers can be captured by the stories of craft brands, says Ian Buxton

Big spirits brands are “struggling to compete” with craft rivals as premiumisation continues across the industry

According to the IWSR’s Global Spirits Trends Report 2015, the overriding trend in the international spirits market in 2014 continued to be that of “premiumisation” across the majority of categories and price points.

The growth of an aspirational middle class in the emerging markets couple with a surge in discerning consumers in developed markets has driven widespread “trading up” trend in the industry.

However, the research suggests that this presents “mixed opportunites” for the drinks market as premiumisation has given rise to the pervasive craft movement, which in turn challenges the market share of established players.

“Although premiumisation has played into the hands of some larger international brands, such as Jack Daniel’s and Hendrick’s, many established brands face a mounting challenge from the rise of the craft sector and the overall fragmentation of the market,” IWSR states.

“As consumers seek to explore, experiment and discover ever-more unique offerings, international brands are struggling to compete at this same level.

“Additionally, in many markets the traditional middle is being squeezed as consumers either gravitate to buyers’ own-labels or trade up to higher price points.”

According to the IWSR, premiumisation has also “manifested itself” in the growth of the malt whisky category, Japanese whisky, single barrel and “esoteric” American whiskies and super-premium gin.

Conversely, a leading bar consultant recently argued that craft labels “mean nothing” to consumers, claiming such terms “do not sell gin”.

Leave a Reply

If that's interesting, how about these?

Beefeater celebrates London with new design

Chivas Brothers has unveiled a new bottle design for its Beefeater London Dry more...

The world's best-selling Scotch whisky brands

Figures confirm that Scotch whisky exports are on the road to recovery, but more...

Rémy CEO: 'The worst is behind us in China'

Eric Vallat, CEO at Cognac house Rémy Martin, has declared “the worst is more...

Confessions of a retailer: Craft Cellars

Darcy Wood, managing partner of Craft Cellars in Calgary, Canada, tells us why more...

The world's best-selling Indian whisky brands

From buoyant brands to troubled trademarks, the Indian whisky category saw it more...

Thirstie expands into mail order spirits

On-demand drinks delivery service Thirstie has added direct mail order and more...

Bloom Gin launches new bottle design

Quintessential Brands has unveiled a new bottle design and label for its Bloom more...

The Brand Champions 2016

The spirits industry is awash with brands selling more than one million cases more...

The world's best-selling world whisky brands

Shifting consumer trends have caused our list of the world’s best-selling more...

Knappogue Castle 'overhauls' brand design

Castle Brands-owned Irish whiskey Knappogue Castle has rolled out a new pack more...

DHL reveals 'significant' distribution investment

UK-based drinks distribution group Tradeteam, part of DHL Supply Chain, has more...

The world’s best-selling vodka brands

2015 proved a mixed year for vodka, with a handful of brands flourishing while more...

Walsh Whiskey opens distillery in Carlow

Walsh Whiskey has officially opened its new €25 million distillery in Royal more...

Spirits shares fluctuate post-Brexit vote

Major drinks suppliers have experienced volatility in trading following the more...

Spirit Cartel makes key appointments

London-based importer Spirit Cartel has expanded its sales team, appointing more...

MS Society to auction ‘rare’ Bowmore

A bottle of 1980 Bowmore Single Malt Scotch Whisky from the Queen’s cask will more...

'Years of uncertainty' for drinks trade after Brexit

Representatives of the international drinks trade have spoken of “serious more...

Are signature serves limiting for spirits brands?

Signature serves are making their mark as producers try to directly educate more...

The world's best-selling Cognac and brandy brands

In spite of varied and plentiful challenges, Cognac and brandy brands have come more...

Maxxium UK eyes £900m spirits opportunity

Spirits distributor Maxxium UK is aiming to “unlock” a sales opportunity of more...