Pernod Ricard, the maker of Chivas Regal, Glenlivet and Absolut, said it expects India to outpace the US to become its largest market globally, without giving any specific time frame. India currently accounts for more than 10% of its global revenue of ₹12.1 billion and nearly a third of its global volume.

“The macroeconomics in India is extremely solid,” Pernod Ricard India managing director Jean Touboul told ET.

“We are growing faster than many other affiliates in the group, and hopefully because we do a good job, but I don’t want to undermine my colleagues’ jobs in other countries. It’s a market where the gross potential is much higher.”

India a must-win country, says Pernod Ricard
India is one of the fastest-growing markets, thanks to favourable macroeconomics, a demographic dividend and 25 million new legal drinking age people that are entering the pool of consumers, he said. The French distiller counts India among its three “must-win” countries, along with the US and China.

In the year ended March, the company’s India revenue increased 10% to ₹25,142 crore although net profit fell 8% to ₹1,343 crore on account of higher tax and promotional spends.

The company controls about a fourth of the overall whisky market in India despite a negligible presence in the mass segment and gets a significant chunk from premium and semi-premium brands, mainly Blenders Pride, Royal Stag and Imperial Blue. The distiller also owns India’s highest selling Scotch 100 Pipers with sales of over 1.5 million cases annually. The company, however, has been increasingly facing competition from Diageo, Beam Suntory and homegrown players such as Amrut and John Distillers in the pricier segments.

“I don’t think India will ever be an easy market. It has its own complexities,” said Touboul, adding, “But I don’t fear competition. I am happy that more players are entering and helping boost the offer for the consumer and we can all together as an industry attract more and more consumers into our products.”

(the above news was originally posted on the economics times)