Research Outline

U.S. Alcohol Leaders' Revenues and Market Share


To provide an overview of the representation of major players in the U.S. alcohol market, using available statistics and data points.

Early Findings

Decline of consumption of beer

Growth driven by seltzers

  • Hard seltzers, such as Truly from the Boston Beer Company, account for 43% of the ready-to-drink beverages category of the U.S. alcohol market, and are driving sales for major breweries.
  • For example, Truly is driving more than 100% of the Boston Beer's retail growth and had 15% sales growth in 2019.
  • In January 2020, Anheuser-Busch InBev added a seltzer based on its Bud Light brand on top of its "two well-established brands, Bon & Viv and the beer-and-fruit flavored Natural Light seltzer," which had an 88% rise in sales in 2019.
  • "White Claw and Truly brands own 80% of the hard seltzer market between them."

Rise in premium pricing

  • "Instead of focusing entirely on selling high volumes of standard beer and wines, companies have shifted to selling more high-margin products — specifically premium-label spirits— at lower volumes and increased prices."
  • For example, spirits priced at $25 and up increased in sales by 13.2% in 2019.
  • Diageo recently bought the Casamigos tequila brand which can retail between $40 to $120 per bottle.

E-commerce in the U.S. alcohol market

  • U.S. online alcohol sales were $2.6 billion in 2019, growing by 22% year-on-year.
  • Online sales represent about 1% ($2.6 billion/$266.4 billion x 100)of the U.S. alcohol market.
  • Nielsen predicted that U.S. suppliers and distributors will put more focus on their e-commerce efforts in 2020.
  • Due to COVID19 online alcohol sales outpaced in-store sales in the U.S. rising by 243% in the week ending March 21, 2020. Spirit sales were up 75%, while wine and beer sales rose up 66%, and 42%, respectively.

Summary of Findings

In this hour, we have provided inisghts on the U.S. alcohol market, as well as how major players are represented or have been impacted by the market using available statistics/data points/examples.