MUMBAI: Cheers! India is on a new high. One more whisky brand from the country has made it to the list of 10 largest selling spirit brands in the world.
Officer’s Choice Whisky, the single brand from the Kishore Chhabria-headed Allied Blenders and Distillers (ABD), is now the tenth-largest selling spirit brand in the world, with sales crossing 12 million cases.
The findings are part of the 2010 edition of the survey conducted annually by UK-based Drinks International, a magazine that devotes exclusively on reporting on world spirit markets. Leading the list of world’s largest ten brands is the 63 million-case Jinro from South Korea. The ranking is across all spirit segments such as rum, vodka, brandy etc.
The other two Indian brands already in the list are Bagpiper and McDowell No.1, the flagship brands of Vijay Mallya-led United Spirits Ltd (USL).
South Korea Jinro is followed by Smirnoff, the legendary vodka from the staples of Diageo that sells 24 million cases annually. Lotte Liquor BJ (21 million), Brazilian Cachaca brand Pirassununga of Companhia Muller De Bebidas (19.5), Tanduay rum from Tanduay Distilleries of the Philippines (16.5 million), celebrated rum brand Bacradi from Bacardi Martin (18.6) precede Bagpiper that has a sales figure of 16 million cases.
While Johnnie Walker is ranked eighth with 14.5 million cases, McDowell No.1 with 13.5 million cases and Officer’s Choice with 12 million cases occupy the ninth and tenth slot, respectively.
Indian whiskies, which were unaffected by the recession, have now emerged as new power brands in the global arena. The millionaire brand list is dominated by India with six whisky brands figuring in the list of world’s top 10—Bagpiper, McDowell No.1, Officer’s Choice, Original Choice, Royal Stag and Old Tavern. Johnnie Walker, Jack Daniel’s, Ballentine’s and Jim Beam are the other brands in the list.
Officer’s Choice, at fourth position, is the latest entrant in the list. While Bagpiper and McDowell No 1 sit pretty at No. 1 and No.3, respectively, Johnnie Walker occupies the No 2 slot.
The change in the ranking of Johnnie Walker, which occupied the numero uno position for at least a decade, is the fallout of recession that gripped the developed economy in 2008 and a major part of 2009, forcing many tipplers to opt for a brand a notch below.
Deepak Roy, a one-time blue-eyed boy of Mr Mallya, currently heading the operation of ABD, said “Officer’s Choice can easily replace McDowell No.1 from its position as the third largest-selling whisky.”