In a recent report by IWSR (International Wine & Spirit Research) and just-drinks, Johnnie Walker was declared the world's top performing distilled spirits brand for 2010, but special notice was given to Jack Daniel's, "which punches above its weight in the global spirits market," according to the study. Jack Daniel's, which is owned by Brown-Forman, is the only brand in the top eight not owned by either Diegeo or Pernod.
In this case, "top performing" incorporates IWSR's rankings based on sales volume, retail value and five-year growth, with a just-drinks reader survey of industry opinion. Other researchers using different methodologies will arrive at different results, so "World's #1 Spirits Brand" remains an elusive title.
Daniel's ranked #4 overall. The second and third places went to vodkas Smirnoff and Absolut, respectively.
This sort of news is released by the company that conducted the research as a tease to sell the full report, so it never tells you everything you want to know. To me, the importance of this sort of news is that although scotch outsells bourbon about five-to-one worldwide, American whiskey Jack Daniel's beats every scotch except Mr. Walker's.
Rounding out the top ten, in order, are Captain Morgan, Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s, Baileys, Hennessy, and Jägermeister.
The full story is here. If you want to read the full report, that will cost you $790. You can order it here.