Jack Daniel’s Honey becomes first flavoured whiskey to reach one million casesBy Becky Paskin
Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey has become the first flavoured whiskey to sell over one million cases, boosting brand owner Brown-Forman’s annual sales.
The US-based drinks group has reported strong financial results for its 2013/14 financial year, boosted by the Jack Daniel’s family of products.
The group’s underlying net sales grew 6% in the year to 30 April 2014, to US$3.94bn, driven mostly by demand for American whiskey and super-premium spirits in the US, Australia and UK.
Sales from the Jack Daniel’s brand grew by 8%, with Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey now selling one million cases on its own having grown 36% in the year. The core expression itself was up 6% globally, with sales in markets outside the US up 9%, led mostly by France, Germany, Russia, Turkey and Brazil.
Similarly, Brown-Forman’s portfolio of super and ultra-premium whiskey brands, including Woodford Reserve and Gentleman Jack, grew underlying net sales by 19%, with the former up 26%. Sales of Old Forester, the company’s founding brand, were up 7%, following an introduction to new markets this year, including the UK.
Paul Varga, CEO of Brown-Forman, said: “We are pleased to report another fiscal year of excellent organic growth, particularly in light of the moderating growth rates of our global competitors.
“I believe that our leadership position in premium American whiskey, led by the one and only Jack Daniel’s trademark, and a very balanced geographic contribution, underpin the company’s differentiated performance. We remain optimistic about the organic growth prospects for Brown-Forman, and our investment posture and fiscal 2015 earnings outlook reflect that optimism.”
Brown-Forman expects the trends of premiumisation and global demand for American whiskey brands to continue in 2014/15, despite “continued uncertainty in the global macroeconomic environment, including weak on-premise trends in the United States and a slight slowdown in some of the emerging markets”.
As such, Brown-Forman expects to deliver 6-8% growth in underlying sales in the next year.
Meanwhile, in the rest of Brown-Forman’s portfolio, Finlandia Vodka grew sales by 4%, driven by premiumisation in Russia and higher pricing in Poland; the Casa Herradura range, including Herradura and el Jimador, grew sales by 10% despite “challenging conditions in the brand family’s home market, Mexico,” and Southern Comfort grew by 2% outside the US.