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Brown-Forman sales boosted by Jack Daniel’s

Woodford Reserve owner Brown-Forman saw organic net sales increase by 17% in its 2022 fiscal year, led by the resurgence of Jack Daniel’s whiskey.

Brown-Forman Jack Daniel's
Jack Daniel’s helped drive sales for Brown-Forman in fiscal 2022

The US firm saw net sales reach US$3.93 billion for the year ending 30 April 2022, while operating income rose by 27% to US$1.2bn.

The firm’s fourth quarter reported a 27% net sales increase to US$966 million. It followed Brown-Forman’s double-digit sales increase for the third quarter.

The company attributed its full-year sales growth to its flagship Jack Daniel’s whiskey, which climbed by 23% as consumers returned to the on-trade.

Lawson Whiting, Brown-Forman’s president and CEO, said: “I am proud of our exceptional results, our strategic progress, and yet another year of growth despite numerous headwinds.

“We achieved these results due in large part to the resurgence of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, which experienced strong consumer demand as the on-premise channel reopened around the world.”

The Jack Daniel’s family of brands recorded a 17% organic net sales rise, with gains made by the global launch of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Apple and the international growth of its RTDs.

The firm noted that the core Jack Daniel’s whiskey, as well as the Honey and Fire line extensions, were impacted by supply chain disruptions.

Brown-Forman’s premium Bourbon brands, led by Woodford Reserve and Old Forester, grew net sales organically by 17%. Old Forester sustained double-digit net sales growth and surpassed 400,000 nine-litre cases during fiscal 2022, the firm said.

The company’s Tequila portfolio, driven by Herradura and El Jimador, reported a 20% organic sales increase.

Geographical performance

Net sales in the US were up by 12%, boosted by Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, Herradura and El Jimador, and higher volumes and price increases for Woodford Reserve and Old Forester.

The firm’s developed international markets increased by 16%, while emerging markets rose by 29%.

The travel retail channel bounced back with net sales soaring by 67%.

During the fourth quarter, the firm said it recognised a US$52m non-cash impairment charge for its Finlandia vodka brand name. Brown-Forman said this reflects a decline in its long-term outlook for Finlandia as a result of the firm’s suspension of operations in Russia, a key market for the brand.

Looking ahead to fiscal 2023, Brown-Forman expects both organic net sales and operating income to rise by mid-single digits.

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