Top seven best-selling gin brandsBy Owen Bellwood
There seems to be little standing in the way of gin’s booming popularity – and it’s certainly not just ‘craft’ players bringing excitement to the category, as our list of the top-selling gin brands proves.
The last 12 months alone have seen gin exports from the UK and Ireland rise, with British gin exports surpassing £600 million for the first time in 2018.
The category has also benefited from the rising tide of flavoured gins. New products from brands such as Beefeater, Slingsby and Malfy contributed to a 751% rise in sales of flavoured gin in the UK in 2018.
As the category grows, there have been increasing calls for greater regulations surrounding what constitutes gin, and the Wine and Spirit Trade Association (WSTA) this week announced it is exploring definitions for gin, including flavoured gin, following the spirit’s rapid global growth.
Following our recently published Brand Champions 2019 report – an analysis of the spirits brands selling more than one million cases annually – we run through the world’s best-selling gin brands on the market today.
Click through the following pages to discover the top seven best-selling gin brands listed in order of their nine-litre case sales.
Data is listed to one decimal place for ease of reading, but the percentage changes are based on the full data supplied to The Brand Champions 2019.
% change: 15.7%
Place last year: 7
After becoming a million-case-selling brand in 2017, William Grant & Sons-owned Hendrick’s posted impressive gains in 2018 to reach sales of 1.3m nine-litre cases.
Hendrick’s, which was crowned Gin Brand Champion in 2018, opened the door to its £13 million (US$17m) Gin Palace last year, allowing the brand to double its capacity to two million cases annually. The brand has also added to its portfolio with the launch of the limited edition summer solstice-inspired Midsummer Solstice gin.
Earlier this year, SB spoke with Hendrick’s master distiller Lesley Gracie about “creating a gin that defied convention”.
% change: 6.9%
Place last year: 6
Beam Suntory-owned Larios continued its year-on-year growth in 2018 with a sales boost of 6.9% to reach 1.5m nine-litre cases.
In its most recent financial results, brand owner Beam Suntory cited gin brands including Sipsmith and Roku as inspiring “strong sales” and supporting its mid-single-digit revenue growth in 2018.
With continued pressure from Hendrick’s, it remains to be seen how long Larios can hold onto its position as the sixth best-selling gin brand.
% change: -0.4%
Place last year: 5
Pernod Ricard-owned Seagram’s witnessed marginal declines in 2018, making it the only brand in the top seven to see its sales dip. Despite this, after selling 2.6m nine-litre cases in 2018 Seagram’s remains comfortably in fifth place in our list of the best sellers.
In the last 12 months, Pernod Ricard increased its gin portfolio with the acquisition of Italian brand Malfy, which joins Beefeater, Plymouth and Seagram’s in its Gin Hub.
% change: 8.8%
Place last year: 4
After sales stagnated in 2017, Pernod Ricard’s flagship gin brand Beefeater returned to growth in last year, posting gains of 8.8%.
The brand launched strawberry-flavoured Beefeater Pink in 2018 and further expanded its portfolio earlier this year with the debut of a new blood orange-flavoured gin.
During the first nine months of its 2018 fiscal year, Pernod Ricard reported that strategic international brands including Beefeater had posted an 8% increase collectively.
% change: 16.1%
Place last year: 3
After five years of continued growth for Diageo-owned Tanqueray, the brand saw its sales reach 4m nine-litre cases in 2018. Tanqueray was the second fastest-growing million-case gin brand according to the Brand Champions report, with volumes up 16.1%.
In the last 12 months, the Diageo-owned brand has launched a new marketing campaign developed to shift consumers’ attention from “gimmicks” to flavour and unveiled a range of bottled ready-to-drink gin and tonics, made with its London Dry Gin and Flor de Sevilla Distilled Gin.
2. Bombay Sapphire
% change: 8.3%
Place last year: 2
Retaining its spot as the second best-selling gin brand in the world is Bacardi-owned Bombay Sapphire. After sales jumped 8.3% in 2018 to reach 4.3m nine-litre cases, the brand has retained its lead over fast-growing Tanqueray.
In order to maintain its positive momentum, the last 12 months saw the brand appoint three new brand ambassadors in North America: Alex Chien, Ryan Wainwright and Annemarie Sagoi. Bombay Sapphire also unveiled a series of images by photographer Rankin as part of its Stir Creativity campaign, and created edible paint in order to “revolutionise” the G&T.
Bombay Sapphire also kicked off a new limited edition range with the launch of a gin inspired by summer in the English countryside.
% change: 26.7%
Place last year: 1
This year’s top-selling gin brand, our Supreme Brand Champion and Gin Brand Champion, is Diageo-owned Gordon’s, which was the fastest-growing brand in 2018 after sales jumped 26.7% to reach 6.5m nine-litre cases.
Years of rebranding, marketing initiatives and well-thought-out product developments from the brand paid off as it moved 2.2m cases ahead of its closest rival – Bombay Sapphire. The brand’s pink iteration has undoubtedly helped to fuel its success, selling 1.21m cases alone last year.
Gordon’s has also unveiled a host of innovative new products in the last 12 months, including two “ultra-low-alcohol” pre-mixed gin and tonic sparkling beverages and Gordon’s Gin-infused popsicles.