just On Call - Women need more choice in the market - Diageo CEO

By | 23 August 2012

Women need more choice in the drinks market, according to Paul Walsh

Women need more choice in the drinks market, according to Paul Walsh

Women should be offered more choices in the drinks market and marketing made more female-friendly, according to Diageo chief Paul Walsh. 

At a press conference following the group's full-year results today, Walsh argued that women are "under-served" by the range of products available. "We need to offer more choices for the female consumer in developed and emerging markets," he said. 

Walsh also admitted that marketing in the drinks industry has "traditionally had a very male voice". 

But he added: "Diageo has done a lot to change this, and this year we stepped it up even further." Walsh pointed to the campaign the company has run with Mad Men actor Christina Hendricks for Johnnie Walker saying it works for both "men and women". 

On the product side, the CEO said that Jose Cuervo Light Margarita has been a "great success" in North America. 

He also highlighted a new permium alcoholic apple-flavoured RTD launched in Kenya, called Snapp.

"In Kenya, women told us they didn't like drinking beer particularly in the on-trade. Packaging and the liquid was viewed as too masculine, so we launched Snapp," he said. 

Walsh called the 4% abv drink, launched in April, a more "stylish and sophisticated alternative to beer". 

Overall, Diageo's Africa sales grew 11% in the full-year, with operating profits up 20%. 

Later, Diageo's chief marketing officer, Andy Fennell told just-drinks said there is a "new era of female empowerment" in emerging markets, particularly Africa. Snapp has also been launched in Nigeria, and Fennell admitted Diageo was looking at other emerging markets for possible roll-outs. But he said there are currently "no plans" to launch the brand into Europe.

Earlier, Fennell said that the company has to be "careful not to patronise people" with its marketing. 

Meanwhile, Walsh also spoke about Diageo's premium baijiu brand, Shui Jing Fang, which was launched in the UK last month. "The liquid may not always be familiar to Western palettes," he said. "There may be some challeges to overcome, but it's a large category and it's premiumising... it's got huge potential."

Expert analysis

Diageo plc (DGE) - Financial and Strategic SWOT Analysis Review

Diageo plc (Diageo) is one of the world's leading companies in the beverage alcohol industry. The company carries out the production and distribution of spirits, beer and wine. The key brands of the company include Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff, Captain Morgan, Baileys Original Irish Cream, J&B, Tanqueray, Guinness, Crown Royal Canadian, Beaulieu Vineyard and Sterling Vineyards, and Bushmills Irish. Diageo also has distribution rights for the Jose Cuervo tequila brands in North America and various other markets. The company sells its products in around 180 markets in North America, Europe, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia Pacific.

Sectors: Beer & cider, Emerging markets – BRIC, Spirits, The off-trade, The on-trade, Wine

Companies: Diageo, Johnnie Walker

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just On Call - Women need more choice in the market - Diageo CEO

There is currently 1 comment on this article

Packaging too should also be mode more feminine. The portability of the product embodies a free style kind of release from the conventional form of clubbing towards a more outgoing upward mobile modern diva hence a tendency towards cans or even PET. Another approach worth of consideration is product diffrentiation away from the apple flavoured RTD's towards premiumisation of whiskies,rums by toning them down . Wink


Gitonga J.N. said at 10:30 pm, August 28, 2012

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