While giant domestic Asian brands make up the lion’s share of the top 10 most sold spirits brands globally, the international bestsellers are not far behind, according to the IWSR Real 100, which ranks the world’s largest spirits brands by volume.
Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky grew by 2% last year, but fell one place to 12th, just ahead of Bacardi rum, unchanged in 13th, and Jack Daniel’s whiskey, which rose two places to 14th.
Eighteen of the brands in the Real 100 belong to Diageo, the most-represented owner on the list. Pernod Ricard follows with ten brands.
The most-represented category in the Real 100 is whisky, with 29 brands featured. Fifteen of these whiskies are Indian, of which ten are owned by either Diageo or Pernod Ricard. The biggest climbers of the whisky category were Japanese whisky Nikka, climbing from 96th to 87th place (12% growth 2016-2017) and Jameson Irish whiskey which climbed from 48th to 43rd (12.1% growth 2016-2017)
Nineteen vodka brands appear on this year’s list. Tito’s once again surged up the rankings: impressive growth of 17.6% in 2017 means that the brand has leapt from 93rd place to 35th in the space of just two years.
Smirnoff is the first truly global brand on the list, selling over 25m cases across 155 countries, and rising one place to sixth this year.
The list features six rum brands. Bacardi stays at 13th, Captain Morgan breaks back into the top 20 in19th place, and Havana Club grew 6.3% to rise one place to 67th.
The world’s most popular alcoholic drink in 2017 was the South Korean soju brand Jinro, owned by Hite-Jinro, which sold almost 76m nine-liter cases.