Pernod Ricard has launched what it claims to be India’s most expensive local whiskey.
The Blender’s Pride Reserve collection was launched with a price tag of INR 800 for a 750ml bottle, while the company also launched a superior version of its Royal Stag whiskey brand in India after seeing 30% growth in sales. value of its locally produced whiskeys.
The reserve collections of Blender’s Pride and Royal Stag whiskeys are more expensive than other Pernod Ricard brands.
The Blender’s Pride Reserve collection is priced close to imported whiskeys from 100 Pipers – which are priced at INR 1,000 for a 750ml bottle – and from Ballantine’s at INR 1,350.
“The research suggested a clear gap in consumer needs,” said a spokesperson for Pernod Ricard India, referring to consumers keen to improve brand preferences.
The Blender’s Pride Reserve collection and the new Royal Stag Barrel Select are both significantly more expensive than their parent brands.
The high tariffs on spirits imported into the country have led Pernod Ricard India to market national brands as well as its international portfolio to expand its market.
Locally made whiskeys Royal Stag, Imperial Blue and Blender’s Pride contributed the bulk of the French company’s Indian branch volume sales of 20 million (nine liters) cases in 2010-11.
The Indian whiskey category has grown much faster in the high end segment than in the middle and lower segments. The premium Indian whiskey market – where Blender’s Pride sells for an average of INR 650 per bottle – is growing at an annual rate of 22% in volume.
The luxury end of the market, where prices average INR 360-400, is growing by 18%. Royal Stag Barrel Select will position itself between the luxury segment and the premium segment.