The world’s most valuable spirit brand

Interbrand has announced its 2021 Best Global Brands and Jack Daniel’s has been crowned the world’s most valuable spirit.

Jack Daniel’s came in at No.81 on the management consulting company’s annual list, which was led by Apple, Amazon, and Microsoft. Interbrand estimates that the Jack Daniels brand is worth $US6.5 billion, a number that has grown by 4% in the past year.

“From its humble beginnings back in the late 1800’s, Jack Daniel’s has steadfastly held to its mantle of craftsmanship, quality, authenticity, and an uncompromising free spirit.” Sophia Angelis, SVP Managing Director – Jack Daniel’s Brands, said as part of the announcement. “Now over 150 years later, our commitment is unchanged, and we’ll continue to make every day count while pushing forward with Mr Jack’s guiding words, ‘Every day we make it, we’ll make it the best we can.'”

Other alcoholic brands that made the list include Budweiser at No.37, Corona at No.78, Heineken at No.89, and Hennessy at No.95.

Following its re-entry to the table last year, Tesla (No.14) was the fastest growing brand of 2021, with an unprecedented 184% increase in brand value. Tesla also saw the largest rise in rankings, moving 26 places up the table, closely followed by (moving up 20 places to No.38) and PayPal (moving up 18 places to No.42).

Sephora (No.100) was the only new entrant to the rankings this year.

The report determined ranking according to a brand’s “financial performance, role in purchase decisions, and competitive strength,” along with other factors. It also analysed how leading brands navigated a “rapidly changing business landscape.”

“Direction, Agility and Participation are three key themes we’ve seen driving brand growth over the past year. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the constantly evolving business landscape, employee buy-in, adapting to change and a strong customer base have helped certain brands to thrive,” said Charles Trevail, Global CEO, Interbrand. “It’s worth calling out Tesla’s growth over the past year – a three-figure increase in brand value is unprecedented in the past 22 years of Best Global Brands. Tesla is a brand that epitomises the importance of brand Direction, Agility and Participation, so I’m unsurprised Tesla made the biggest leap up the Best Global Brands ranking in 2021.”

The big success stories for Jack Daniel’s in the last 12 months

Angelis spoke to Interbrand about the triumphs and challenges the world’s most valuable spirit brand has experienced during COVID-19.

“It’s been a crazy year,” she admitted. “But at the same time, it’s been one of the most exhilarating and creative years and I can say that I’m here really speaking on behalf of a very broad team at Jack Daniel’s who have done a phenomenal job in in the context of a pandemic.”

“As people were treating themselves at home and drinking better, there was double digit growth of our ready-to-drink business. This reinforces an ongoing consumer trend towards convenience, towards refreshing tastes, but also particularly during the pandemic —the desire for safe formats with which to consume.”

Angelis also credited Jack Daniel’s flavours with driving growth.

“Our Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, which is in its 10th year, continues to grow and then Tennessee Apple, which we’re still at launch phase and continuing to expand geographically, has exceeded our launch expectations,” she said.

“What we see on Jack Daniel’s flavours is that we source most of our volume on Tennessee Honey, Tennessee Apple from outside of the whiskey category that typically are non-whiskey drinkers, but we satisfy a need for something approachable and easy to drink. But that also has the Jack signature that brings those Jack values to life. So ultimately it comes back to having the consumer front and centre.”

Angelis said another “big success” was the launch of the ‘Make it Count’ campaign, which is Jack Daniels’ new creative platform.

“This is really our creative platform for years to come,” she noted. “It was launched from many markets around the world and was a significant shift versus what we did historically. The investment behind it is important because we needed to reach as many consumers as possible, so we doubled our media investment versus the previous year.

“Our ‘Make it Count’ campaign was the result of looking at what was driving the consumer. What do they aspire to? What are their concerns? What are the values and the role of the Jack Daniel’s brand, and how can those two come together? The idea was hatched just before the pandemic and when things were still open, and it was a great platform then. And I still believe it’s a very strong and engaging platform. The ‘Make it Count’ idea is based on consumers’ deep-rooted desire for human connection. That doesn’t change. Where it happens might change, but the ongoing need for that connection won’t change.”

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