Festive gifting and parties boost spirit sales, while consumers relish warming up over their favourites festive tipples
12 November 2008
At a glance
- Alcohol represents 27% of total sales at Christmas (Source: A.C. Nielsen Market Track Total ROI 2006)
- Irish Whiskey, at 41%, sells a higher percentage at Christmas versus total spirits, at 36% (Source: A.C. Nielsen Multiples O/N/D ROI 2007)
- Together Jameson, Powers and Paddy represent 85% of Irish Whiskey sales at Christmas (Source: A.C. Nielsen Multiples ROI 2007)
- Jameson is the number one value and volume spirit at Christmas and has 53% share of Irish Whiskey sales (Source: A.C. Nielsen Multiples ROI 2007)
- Martell VS is Europe’s number one Cognac
- Carolans Irish Cream is the second largest-selling Irish cream liqueur in the world
- Russian Standard Vodka is Russia’s number one premium vodka and was ranked fourth fastest growing spirits brand in the world in 2007 (Impact Magazine Feb 2008)
- Tullamore Dew is the fastest growing Irish Whiskey and the number two bestseller in the world (IWRS 2007)
- Remy Martin VSOP Fine Champagne Cognac remains a best-selling cognac throughout the world, accounting for one in every three VSOPs (Very Special Old Pale) sold
- Jaegermeister is a huge seller in the shooter market and growing internationally, with sales up over 50%
- Hennessy remains Ireland’s favourite cognac, representing almost 90% of the brandy category.
Alcohol represents 27% of total sales at Christmas (Source: A.C. Nielsen Market Track Total ROI 2006) and, patriotically, Irish Whiskey makes up 41% of the market, outperforming total spirits, at 36% (Source: A.C. Nielsen Multiples O/N/D ROI 2007). Together Jameson, Powers and Paddy (distributed by Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard) represent 85% of Irish Whiskey sales at Christmas (Source: A.C. Nielsen Multiples ROI 2007), and Jameson is the number one value and volume spirit during the season with 53% share of Irish Whiskey sales (Source: A.C. Nielsen Multiples ROI 2007).
Cream liqueurs enjoy particular success also around Christmas time, as proved by heightened sales of the number one brand, Baileys Irish Cream. The category provides great scope for treat and gifting options, and lends itself well to premiumisation on account of this.
In general, spirits offer higher cash margins than many other categories, as well as driving knock-on sales, in soft drinks and snacks for instance. To maximise off-licence sales, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard recommends:
- offering a comprehensive range of wines and spirits, with leading brands at eye level
- allocating more space to leading spirits and wine brands
- ensuring that every product is correctly priced and that all manufacturers’ promotions are passed onto the customer, in order to compete with supermarkets, and using point of sale and off shelf displays where possible
- stock, display and clearly price premium whiskey or brandy that can be bought as a gift or to celebrate over the Christmas period. Seasonal packs also offer increased sales opportunities and should be displayed off shelf to create interest and drive incremental sales
Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard
As Ireland’s number one spirits and wines supplier, Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard is working closely with retailers and publicans to get the most from spirits and wine in the run up to Christmas. This September saw the launch of the new Jameson advertising campaign ‘It’s a Jameson thing’, focused on outdoor, on-line, premium lifestyle print and leading national broadsheets, as well as targeted outdoor media such as 3D special 48 sheets and new ‘metropole’ sites, to be used to further enhance the campaign. In the off-trade it will be supported with special window displays. Jameson will be available this Christmas in single bottle cartons and a gift pack featuring a Jameson hip flask.
For Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard’s other whiskey brands, Powers advertising campaign ‘Pure Gold’ will feature in both outdoor and print nationwide. In the off-trade channel consumers can avail of the Powers single bottle carton and gift pack featuring two premium Powers tumblers, while Paddy is also available in a single bottle carton and gift pack featuring two Paddy glasses.
In the vodka market Irish Distillers is promoting two distinctively packaged bottles this Christmas, Absolut Masquerade and Wyborowa. Irish Distillers is also promoting Cork Dry Gin with the advertising ‘THE GIN’ in print, and point of sale. In the off-trade the Cork Dry Gin single bottle carton is available for Christmas gifting.
Finally, another gem in the Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard portfolio, Martell VS is Europe’s number one cognac, and will perform strongly once again this Christmas amongst discerning cognac-lovers. This year it is available in the off channel in a stylish gift pack with two brandy glasses, as well as an elegant single bottle carton.
Carolans Irish Cream is a favourite with many Irish consumers and is the second largest-selling Irish cream liqueur in the world. Distributed in Ireland by FindlaterGrants, Carolans is produced in Clonmel and combines the finest of Irish honey, cream and spirits to offer customers the very best cream liqueur with a distinctive spirit note and attractive packaging.
Special Christmas glass packs and display units will be in-store this Christmas, as well as four-bottle miniature packs, which make perfect stocking fillers for family and friends. With an attractive price point and a superior flavour, Carolans is a must for every household this Christmas.
Also distributed in the Re public of Ireland by FindlaterGrants, Russian Standard Vodka is Russia’s number one premium vodka and was ranked fourth fastest growing spirits brand in the world in 2007 (Impact Magazine Feb 2008). Since the brand’s Irish launch in spring 2008 it has secured nationwide distribution, and being supported by a heavyweight advertising campaign, awareness for Russian Standard vodka has risen to 41% of Irish vodka drinkers (MillwardBrown IMS Research, Jul 2008).
With an outdoor campaign running in October, Russian Standard Vodka will be supporting its advertising campaign with special Christmas gift packs, display units and in-store promotions. Especially for the festive season, Russian Standard Original is available in a premium gift box, while Russian Standard Platinum can be bought in an embossed silver metal tin; the ideal premium gift choice for the vodka connoisseur.
Finally, this year has been hugely successful for Tullamore Dew, which is the fastest growing Irish Whiskey and is now the number two bestseller in the world (IWRS 2007). The number one selling Irish whiskey brand in Germany, Sweden, Denmark and the Czech Republic, and the leading overall whiskey brand in Bulgaria and Latvia, it outsells Scotch by a significant margin.
In addition, the brand announced a 20% growth in the year to February 2008, making Tullamore Dew by far the most dynamic brand of Irish whiskey internationally. This Christmas, FindlaterGrants is offering a variety of Tullamore Dew gift packs including a 70cl gift box, a unique Tullamore Dew Crock and a two glass gift pack. In addition, the Tullamore Dew 12 Year Old will be available in 70cl gift boxes.
Barry Fitzwilliam Maxxium
Barry Fitzwilliam Maxxium distributes a wide range of premium spirits, including Teachers Scotch, Courvoisier Cognac, Rémy Martin Cognac, The Famous Grouse Finest Scotch Whisky, Jim Beam Bourbon, Vladivar Vodka, Boru Vodka, and two new additions this Christmas, Famous Grouse 10 Year Old and Pinky Vodka.
Also available from Barry Fitzwilliam Maxxium, the award winning Laphroaig Scotch Whisky comes in the form of a rich and pungent 10 Year Old or the smooth and exceptionally rare 40 Year Old. The brand is considered to make some the best single malts in the world, as Laphroaig was voted ‘the best of the best’ in 2005 in the Champions of Whisky Competition. Distilled on the remote island of Islay off the West Coast of Scotland, Laphroaig is the most richly flavoured of all Scottish malts.
Remy Martin VSOP Fine Champagne Cognac remains a best-selling cognac throughout the world, accounting for one in every three VSOPs (Very Special Old Pale) sold.
Dedicated to tradition, Remy Martin VSOP (the flagship of the brand) has a golden amber hue and full nosed flavour, which sets it apart as a superior quality cognac. The blend is 55% Grande Champagne and 45% Petite Champagne with a fresh full nose of vanilla, limousine oak, dried rose and apricot, and a perfectly balanced blend of ripeness in its finish.
Made in Ireland, Boru is a clean vodka of unusual clarity and exceptional smoothness. Its crisp, even taste makes it a fresh alternative to enjoy neat, as a martini or the foundation of a cocktail. Boru Vodka is the real alternative for those who understand taste, “the kind you savour, not the kind you affect,” says Barry Fitzwilliam Maxxium.
And new to the Irish vodka market, Pinky was fashioned by a team of Swedish Champion wine tasters. Its delicious ‘pink’ taste arises from the twelve specially selected botanicals that are infused with the vodka after distillation, including violets, rose petals and wild strawberries. Dubbed the world’s first ‘vodka rosé’, this pink-hued vodka is hand blended and packed with esters – the delicate top note flavour that gives fresh fruit its vibrant palate – Pinky is the only vodka made especially for women; perfect for those girlie Christmas parties.
Finally, shooters will be top of the bill this Christmas and leading brand names within Barry Fitzwilliam Maxxium are ready to cater for all, such as Cointreau, Bols, Sourz and Jagermeister. The distributor has a fun offer this Christmas with the Jagermeister Beanie Pack, which features a bottle of the favourite German schnapps and a funky woolly hat. Jaegermeister is a huge seller in the shooter market with its unique bitter blend of 56 herbs and spices, and growing internationally, with sales up over 50% from a large base.
For more information on Barry Fitzwilliam Maxxium products, contact (Cork) 021 4320900, (Dublin) 01 6671755, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Edward Dillon & Co
This Christmas, Hennessy presents the ever-popular Hennessy gift pack containing Hennessy VS and two specially created Hennessy glasses, which are a modern interpretation of the traditional balloon glass. This Gift pack is a favorite amongst discerning consumers who appreciate quality, style and innovation.
Hennessy remains Ireland’s favourite cognac, representing almost 90% of the brandy category. Hennessy VS (Very Special) is enjoyed neat, on the rocks, mixed as a long drink or as part of the popular Hennessy City Cocktail. The Hennessy two glass gift pack is sure to be a huge success this festive season, available from Edward Dillon & Co at RSP of €32.99.
This Christmas, Hennessy also presents the exquisite Hennessy XO Iridescence from its 2008/2009 Exclusive Collection; the mythical XO decanter is adorned for festive dinners. The ultimate premium offering, its iconic grape bunches are decorated with eighty-two Swarovski crystals and the decanter is presented in a gift box with gunmetal grey metallic glints, embellished with diamonds cut in trompe-l’oeil.
Hennessy XO Iridescence is available from Edward Dillon & Co at RSP of €147.99.
Also distributed by Edward Dillon & Co, Finlandia, Ireland’s number one premium vodka, is now available for Christmas in one of two striking gift packs, both of which can be found nationwide at RSP €22.99. Finally, Bombay Sapphire is now available for Christmas in an equally striking gift pack. At RSP €26.49, the exclusive Bombay Sapphire Gift Pack will include a 70cl bottle of Bombay Sapphire as well as the Perfect Serve Cocktail Guide, for gin lovers and cocktail connoisseurs.
United Wine Merchants
The Sidekick shots range has undergone a major facelift during the summer with the introduction of a new 50cl self pouring bottle and four new flavours. The range now comprises of six flavours; original Blueberry, Redberry and the four new flavours, Choc Mint, Strawberries and Cream, Cracked Apple and Crushed Cola, each with an ABV of 14.5%.
All products are ideally suited to mixing with lemonade or fruit juices to create refreshing long drinks as well as being suitable for self poured shots, ideal over ice. As well as tasting great, the products also deliver a high visual impact making them a must stock item this Christmas.
“We don’t make outlandish claims about Red Square Vodka!” says United Wine Merchants about its premium, triple distilled, carbon filtered vodka. Red Square is great either on its own with ice or as a mixer to create favourite cocktails. Having outperformed key competitors in taste tests and having achieved competitive trade pricing, it gives outstanding margin, while offering great value to the consumer. With an RRP of only €17.99, Red Square Vodka is a must stock item for Christmas.
Ireland’s best selling range of fruit flavoured liquor and the number two liqueur brand in Ireland after Baileys, Mickey Finn continues to break records year in year out and is now an important part of any bar offering. From style bars to student bars, the versatility of Mickey Finn lends itself to cocktails, long drinks and shooters. Available in Sour Green Apple (made famous by the Appletini) Pressed Red Apples, Sour Blueberry, Sour Raspberry and Butterscotch, these 15% ABV liqueurs are essential for any party season, especially Christmas.
Diageo is set to “spice up the spirit market” in Ireland, with the launch of Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold this October. The sixth largest spirit brand worldwide, Morgan’s Spiced has been rebranded Captain Morgan Original Spiced Gold, bringing it into line with other worldwide markets.
Speaking at the launch, Graham Villiers-Tuthill, brand manager, said: “Captain Morgan is an iconic brand which is all about fun and partying. The Captain Morgan character has celebrity status in the USA and other markets and we are introducing his rebellious, yet playful personality through our digital and on-trade activity.
“Captain Morgan will appeal to our consumers not only for being a well-known premium quality brand but also as a legendary partier. It makes for the perfect golden spirit and cola combination.”
This Caribbean rum based spirit will bear the classic symbols of its worldwide heritage, such as the Captain’s logo, allowing for greater brand visibility. The launch campaign is supported by a comprehensive on-trade sampling, PR and digital campaign across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.