Tanduay dislodges Bacardi as world’s No. 1 rum
Iris Gonzales (The Philippine Star) - June 14, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Lucio Tan-owned Tanduay rum is now the world’s number one rum, beating for the first time perennial leader Puerto Rican brand Bacardi.

It’s the first time a Philippine-made liquor brand has been ranked the top-selling rum in the world by think tank Drinks International, said Bong, son of Tan and president of Tanduay Distillers Inc.

Citing data from Drinks International, Tanduay chief financial officer Nestor Mendones said the company sold 19.5 million nine-liter cases worldwide last year, up from Bacardi’s 16.3 million nine-liter cases.

Bacardi has consistently held the top spot among the world’s best rum and many other brands have been trying to snatch the number one ranking from it. It lost the title to Indian rum McDowell in 2014 only to regain it again, according to a report on thespiritsbusiness.com.

 The younger Tan said this is the first time that a Philippine-made brand has surpassed Bacardi in the rankings game in terms of sales volume.

Gerardo Tan Tee, chief operating officer and and overall-in-charge of the LT Group’s  distillery operations said team work, marketing efforts, creativity and investments all helped put Tanduay in the top spot.

The company penetrated the US in 2014 and has been growing its market share there. It is also present in Southeast Asian countries.

Despite hitting the top spot, however, Tanduay’s net income declined 43 percent to P633 million last year from P909 million.

In the first quarter, Tanduay posted a net income of P135 million, 35 percent lower than the previous year.

 Mendones said the drop in income was due to higher expenses.

He said the company would continue to pour in investments in marketing to achieve parallel growth in both volume and bottom line.

“In terms of volume, we are hitting our targets…For the bottom line, we hope we can possibly match last year’s level,” Mendones said.

The Lucio Tan group acquired the Tanduay brand from the Elizalde family in 1988.

The company has implemented plant modernization and expansion projects to increase the distillery’s capacity since the elder Tan acquired the brand 30 years ago.

Aside from rum, Tanduay Distillers also produces spirits, wines, brandies, gins and vodka.

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