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Rum Brand Champion 2018: Captain Morgan

Captain Morgan witnessed ‘highest rate of growth’ across rum in 2017

Rum’s overall sales increase of 0.7% in 2017 may not have been spectacular, but a number of the world’s biggest producers have welcomed a significant boost to their individual sales. Diageo-­owned Captain Morgan boasted the highest rate of growth for any international rum brand, earning it the title of Rum Brand Champion 2018.

Sales of Captain Morgan increased by 9.3% in the 2017 calendar year, a feat that global brand director Nik Keane says was made possible by a growing international fan base.

“We have a long rich history in North America, and this continues to be an important market for Captain Morgan,” explains Keane. “The brand is now sold in more than 120 countries, and some of our more recent success stories are coming from markets including the UK, Germany, Australia, South Africa, Mexico and France. Innovation continues to grow the success of Captain Morgan.”

Captain Morgan has introduced a number of flavoured shot expressions to the US market in recent years. However, the most pertinent gains for the brand are a result of its “light-­hearted” marketing campaigns that put the brand’s titular captain in the spotlight. “The most famous face to do with Captain Morgan is Captain Morgan himself,” says Keane. “One of our favourite friends is Captain Wes Morgan, of Leicester City’s Premier League team. Captain Morgan even moved aside to let Captain (Wes) Morgan be the only Captain for a day when Leicester City won the English Premier League.“

Other brands in this year’s report experienced mixed fortunes. With a sales jump of 17.5%, Tanduay Distillers-­owned Tanduay rum achieved sales of 19.5m cases, meaning the Philippine brand has once again overtaken Bacardí to become this year’s best­-selling rum. Fabrica de Alcoholes y Licores de Antioquia-­owned brand Ron Medellin also achieved impressive double-­digit growth (15.7%).

Meanwhile, brands including Old Port Rum and Contessa saw heavy losses in 2017, with volumes dropping 22.3% and 10.1% respectively. But as our Rum Brand Champion Captain Morgan strives for a third consecutive year of growth in 2018, Keane says the “same ingredients” will be essential to any future success for the brand.

“Rum continues to be an incredibly exciting category to be playing in,” Keane adds. “With our award­-winning marketing campaigns and a reputation for great taste and mixability, we will continue to offer consumers a choice of different, delicious drinks.”

*The Brand Champions data is listed to one decimal place for ease of reading, but the percentage changes are based on the full data supplied. All brand data is supplied in millions of nine-­litre cases.

Rum (figures: million 9l case sales)

BRAND OWNER 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 %+/-­
Tanduay Tanduay Distillers 14.0 17.0 16.5 16.6 19.5 17.5%
Bacardí Bacardi 19.1 18.2 17.4 17.2 16.8 -2.7%
McDowell’s No.1 Rum United Spirits 16.2 16.6 16.2 14.9 12.5 -16.1%
Captain Morgan Diageo 10.3 10.4 10.3 10.7 11.7 9.3%
Havana Club Pernod Ricard 3.9 4.0 4.0 4.2 4.4 4.8%
Barceló Ron Barceló 2.1 2.2 2.0 2.1 2.2 6.3%
Contessa Radico Khaitan 2.6 2.7 2.7 2.0 1.8 -10.1%
Ron Medellin Fabrica de Alcoholes y Licores de Antioquia 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.4 1.6 15.7%
Old Port Rum Amrut Distillers 1.5 1.8 1.9 1.7 1.3 -22.3%
Appleton Estate Gruppo Campari 1.2 1.2 1.3 1.2 1.2 0.0%
Božkov Stock Spirits Group 0.9 0.9 1.2 1.1 1.1 3.5%
Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum William Grant & Sons 0.9 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 -2.0%
Cacique Diageo 2.2 1.2 1.1 1.0 1.0 0.0%
Negrita La Martiniquaise-­Bardinet 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 1.0 -2.0%

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