10 Largest Whiskey Brands In The World

By Sky Ariella - May. 31, 2021

Find a Job You Really Want In

Few commodities hold the same worldwide value that alcohol does. Having a drink or two is a pleasure that transcends demographics and generates billions of dollars in annual revenue. In the United States alone, alcohol creates an estimated four million jobs and generates over $70 billion annually.

A type of alcohol that’s enjoyed globally and produces millions of cases every year is whiskey.

Whiskey is produced in many different countries and exported around the world. The top ten largest international whiskey brands include:

  1. Jack Daniel’s

  2. Jim Beam

  3. Imperial Blue

  4. Ballantine’s

  5. Jameson

  6. Crown Royal

  7. Fireball

  8. Evan Williams

  9. Maker’s Mark

  10. Knob Creek

10 Largest Whiskey Brands in the World

  1. Jack Daniel’s. Tennessee, United States

    Parent Company: Brown-Forman Corporation
    Sales Volume: 13.3 Million Cases

    According to their consistently increasing sales volume per year, Jack Daniel’s American bourbon whiskey brand is the largest in the world. The brand has a long history, starting in 1875 when Jasper “Jack” Daniel founded it. By the 1880s, Jack Daniel’s had a total of 15 distilleries across Tennessee.

    The popularity of the Jack Daniel’s brand skyrocketed in 1904 when it was designated as the finest whiskey by the St. Louis World’s Fair.

    Revenue soared throughout the twentieth century, and Brown-Forman Corporation bought the brand in 1956. Over the turn of the century, Jack Daniels tinkered with their distillation process and steadily rose in the whiskey ranks.

    Jack Daniel’s 150-year-run of success in the whiskey industry results from their dedication to producing a high-quality product.

    The brand spent a lot of time working out the kinks of its distillation process to produce the best-tasting whiskey available. Today, the whiskey produced at every Jack Daniel’s distillery is still handcrafted to maintain this vow.

  2. Jameson. Dublin, Ireland

    Parent Company: Pernod Ricard
    Sales Volume: 11 Million Cases

    Founded nearly 250 years ago, Jameson is by far the most popular Irish whiskey in the world. It began as a Dublin whiskey made at Jameson Distillery Bow St., established by John Jameson. Jameson was already the top whiskey producer in Ireland by distilling a million gallons yearly by the beginning of the 19th century.

    The brand continued to gain a reputation for being the most desirable whiskey, and in 1976 they moved their productions to the New Midleton Distillery Complex to meet the growing demand. Today, Jameson has 35 distilleries to create their 11 million cases of whiskey yearly.

    The reason why so many consumers loyally choose Jameson, according to the brand, is maintaining both their beloved original whiskey mix and continuing to innovate their product portfolio.

    They also attribute their success to having a rich history that spans centuries, which garners market attention and trust. This combination of factors has enabled Jameson to be one of the oldest and largest whiskey brands worldwide.

  3. Jim Beam. Illinois, United States

    Parent Company: Beam Suntory, Inc.
    Sales Volume: 9.7 Million Cases

    Jim Beam is another American-produced bourbon whiskey that sells an incredible amount of volume globally every year. The brand was founded by Jacob Beam in 1795, making the brand one of the oldest whiskies in existence. However, they didn’t adopt the name “Jim Beam” until 1943.

    While descendants of the Beam family continue to be very involved in the distillery process, the brand has been owned by Beam Suntory, Inc. since 2014, one of the largest whiskey companies in the world. Joining Beam Suntory allowed Jim Beam’s products to establish a more global presence.

    The success of Jim Beam’s whiskey brand over 200 years is because of their advertising and distillation process. Like Jack Daniel’s, Jim Beam puts a lot of thought into how their whiskey is made by putting their product through a double distillation with a four-year age in oak casks.

    These procedures ensure the top-notch woody taste of Jim Beam’s whiskey. Additionally, their marketing campaigns focus on the brand’s lengthy history and expertise to draw consumers who trust them.

    These factors contribute greatly to Jim Beam being the third largest brand of whiskey around the globe.

  4. Imperial Blue. Palwal, India

    Parent Company: Pernod Ricard
    Sales Volume: 8.8 Million Cases

    While Imperial Blue’s name isn’t as universally well-known as some of the other major brands, their sales volume makes them one of the biggest whiskey brands on the market.

    The brand is much younger than its competitors, having been founded in 1997. Imperial Blue hails from India and is made with Indian grain spirits and imported Scotch malts.

    It was originally conceptualized by Seagram’s to be a whiskey that was marketed to India. Pernod Ricard later bought out the brand in 2004 to enter the Indian liquor markets.

    The most notable aspect of Imperial Blue’s business strategy has been sneaky marketing to circumvent national marketing restrictions. In response to India’s Cable Television Regulation Amendment Bill in 2000 that banned alcohol advertisements.

    Imperial Blue found the budget to shoot a feature-length film under the title of their brand’s slogan “Men Will Be Men” in 2011, which effectively circumvented this law. Their determination to have their brand be known has allowed Imperial Blue to become one of the most massive whiskey brands in India and the world.

  5. Ballantine’s. Dumbarton, Scotland

    Parent Company: Pernod Ricard
    Sales Volume: 7.7 Million Cases

    Ballantine’s is a scotch whiskey whose lineage can be traced back to an Edinborough grocery liquor store established in 1827. The brand began as a creation of George Ballatine and his son when they started experimenting with their scotch blends.

    Throughout the 1900s, Ballatine’s focused on expanding their grain distilleries and eventually became the largest whiskey producer in Europe. By 1965, Ballatine’s brand was exporting its products overseas and quickly becoming known as the preferred brand of scotch worldwide.

    The brand’s growth and sustainability into the twenty-first century are largely due to Ballantine’s excellent distribution system. Additionally, their rise in popularity mimicked the demand for scotch, specifically in the 1980s.

    While Ballantine’s isn’t as dominant in the market anymore, they’ve managed to secure their place as one of the largest whiskey brands in the world.

  6. Crown Royal. Manitoba, Canada

    Parent Company: Diageo
    Sales Volume: 7.3 Million Cases

    Crown Royal is a Canadian whiskey that made its way across American boundaries around the 1960s. The brand was founded by Samuel Bronfman, the president of Seagram, around twenty years early as a homage to the 1939 royal tour of Canada.

    The story goes that over 600 blends of whiskey were tried before the perfect concoction was found to be Crown Royal.

    Today, Crown Royal still produces their blend in Manitoba, where the brand began. Their distilleries store an estimated 1.5 million barrels of whiskey at any given time. Crown Royal remains the top-selling brand of Canadian whiskey in the United States and one of the largest whiskey brands globally.

  7. Fireball. Louisiana, United States

    Parent Company: The Sazerac Company
    Sales Volume: 5.65 Million Cases

    The whiskey produced by the Fireball brand is unique because of its distinct notes of cinnamon sweetness. It’s made with a base of Canadian whiskey and flavorings to achieve the brand’s fiery taste. Fireball whiskey was originally developed to be a product for Seagram in 1984 but was quickly taken over by The Sazerac Company five years later.

    Business analysts have considered Fireball to be one of the most successful liquor brands of the past few decades. The brand has made this impact on the industry because of its aggressive marketing strategies.

    Firstly, Fireball would seek out college towns to promote their whiskey, starting with Nashville and working outwards. When this proved successful, and the brand got off the ground, Fireball enlisted celebrities to back their whiskey, which also helped skyrocket sales.

    Fireball’s business tactics have worked to their benefit, and it’s become one of the biggest whiskey brands out there.

  8. Evan Williams. Kentucky, United States

    Parent Company: The Heaven Hill Company
    Sales Volume: 2.6 Million Cases

    Evan Williams is a brand of bourbon whiskey based out of Kentucky that’s recognized for their minimum 4-year aging process that their products undergo. Founded in 1957, the brand’s name was inspired by a Welsh immigrant named Evan Williams, who began distilling his whiskey in the late 1700s.

    It became the first commercial distillery in Kentucky and went on to rise in popularity among Americans.

    Evan Williams is a whiskey company that’s grown its success through having a wide variety of products. The brand totes seven varieties of whiskey from 80-107 proof and sells several liquors like Egg Nog and Honey Reserve.

    Their choice and distillation process has paved the way for Evan Williams to be one of the largest whiskey brands in the world.

  9. Maker’s Mark. Kentucky, United States

    Parent Company: Beam Suntory, Inc.
    Sales Volume: 2.2 Million Cases

    Another brand of whiskey that comes from Kentucky is Maker’s Mark. The brand was established in the mid-1900s after William Samuels Sr., its founder, bought out Burk’s Distillery. Throughout the 1960s, Maker’s Mark was advertised under the tagline “It tastes expensive…and is”, which built its reputation as a high-quality liquor.

    Several different companies acquired the Maker’s Mark brand before being absorbed by Beam Suntory in 2014. However, its production process is still overseen by members of the Samuels family.

    Much like many other successful liquor trademarks, the brand owes a lot of its triumphs in the market to its diligent advertising and public relations. Maker’s Mark continues to prevail as one of the largest whiskey brands available for purchase in 2021.

  10. Knob Creek. Kentucky, United States

    Parent Company: Beam Suntory, Inc.
    Sales Volume: 200,000 Cases

    Knob Creek is a whiskey brand that also belongs to the massive portfolio of Beam Suntory, Inc. It’s a straight bourbon with a complex flavor profile with touches of brown sugar, chocolate, and cinnamon achieved through a lengthy aging process in American white oak.

    Targeted at the high-end market, Knob Creek was introduced to the public in 1992 as part of a whiskey line that included Bookers, Baker’s, and Basil Hayden’s. Between its other whiskey siblings, Knob Creek reigned the most successful.

    Knob Creek still uses the 9-year aging process that it became known for when it was first introduced to the market, which is potentially why the small-batch brand continues to flourish steadily.

    While it doesn’t have the massive sales volume of its competition, Knob Creek is still considered one of the largest whiskey brands available today and has room to keep growing.

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating / 5. Vote count:

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

Never miss an opportunity that’s right for you.
Sky Ariella

Author

Sky Ariella

Sky Ariella is a professional freelance writer, originally from New York. She has been featured on websites and online magazines covering topics in career, travel, and lifestyle. She received her BA in psychology from Hunter College.

Find The Best Job That Fits Your Career

Major Survey Entry Point Icon

Where do you want to work?

Related posts