A record 10.4 million cases of Jameson were sold in the 12 months to the end of June, up 22 per cent on the Irish Distillers brand’s previous financial year.
Some 4.5 million cases of the Pernod Ricard-owned company’s flagship product were sold in the key US market for the first time, a year-on-year increase of 9 per cent.
Jameson is now the fastest-growing whiskey brand in the world, Irish Distillers said in its financial results for the 2021/2022 year, performing strongly last year in its most important markets.
Irish sales volumes of Jameson were up 20 per cent while sales of the spirit in the UK climbed 16 per cent.
With the resurgence of global travel retail over the past year, sales of Jameson in airports and other travel settings soared 157 per cent in the financial year, Irish Distillers said.
“The continued globalisation of the Jameson brand is also reflected in the brand’s growth in emerging markets including India, Zambia and Bulgaria all of which surpassed the 100,000 case mark for the first time,” the company said.
Nodjame Fouad, chairman and chief executive at Irish Distillers, said: “We continue to develop our historically strong markets, such as the US – which reached the 4.5 million case mark in this financial year – while also strengthening Jameson’s brand affinity in new and less-traditional Irish whiskey markets such as India, Zambia and Bulgaria – all of which broke the significant 100,000 case mark.
“The growth that we are seeing in these non-traditional Irish whiskey markets is the result of consistent focus and determined brand building and development.”
Underpinned by an industry-wide shift in consumer demand towards premium products, sales of Irish Distillers’ “prestige range” – which includes Redbreast, Midleton Very Rare and the Spot whiskey range – grew 16 per cent in the year to the end of June.
Redbreast is now “the largest selling single pot still Irish whiskey in the world”, Irish Distillers said, exceeding the 100,000 case mark for the first time.
Also publishing full-year financial results on Thursday, Pernod Ricard reported a stronger-than-expected 19 per cent organic rise in its full-year 2021/22 operating profit, driven by strong demand for its premium spirits in Europe, China and the United States and cost control.
The world’s second-biggest spirits group said that with recurring free cash flow at a record €1.9 billion, it was offering shareholders a 32 per cent dividend hike to €4.12 per share and a new buyback scheme worth €500 million to €750 million for its current financial year, which started in July.
Over the 12 months to June 30th, the firm’s profit from recurring operations reached €3 billion, an organic rise of 19 per cent, above analysts’ 18.1 per cent forecast.
Sales topped €10 billion, an organic rise of 17 per cent, with sales up 8 per cent in the all-important US market, 5 per cent in China and 26 per cent in India.