Our Strategy

Diageo's strategy is to drive top line growth and margin expansion in a sustainable and responsible way and to deliver consistent value creation for its shareholders over the long term. To do this Diageo will use its broad brand range, category depth and geographic reach to deliver on consumer needs. Key to achieving its strategy is the expertise of its people who share the same values.

Our Business Model - how we deliver value for our shareholders

Diageo has a broad range of leading brands across categories and price points. It owns six of the world's top 20 spirit brands by retail sales, including Johnnie Walker, the number one spirit brand by value and Smirnoff, the number one premium spirit brand by volume, making Diageo the leading premium spirits business in the world by volume, net sales and operating profit. In beer, Diageo owns one of the truly global beer brands, Guinness, the number one stout in the world. Diageo's wine brands are sold predominantly in North America and Great Britain where they offer a route to market benefit. Diageo's global brands are complemented by strong local brands to broaden the category range and to create category depth providing access at affordable price points to the increasing number of middle class consumers aspiring to trade up in their drink of choice. Diageo's brands cover a range of price points, from Diageo's reserve brands, including Johnnie Walker Blue Label, Cîroc and Ketel One vodka to more affordable brands, such as VAT69 in India, White Horse in Russia and 20cl bottles of Johnnie Walker Red Label and local beers across Africa.

Diageo is a global company with products sold in more than 180 countries around the world. In the developed markets, primarily in North America and Western Europe, Diageo has built scale and strong routes to market. In the new high growth markets, Diageo is the number one international spirits company in Asia Pacific and Latin America and the leading beer and spirits company in Africa. These rapidly growing markets now contribute more than 40% of Diageo's net sales, up from a fifth in 2005. These markets are expected to contribute 50% of Diageo's net sales by the end of 2015 through double digit organic growth as international spirits penetration expands and with selective acquisitions.

In the new high growth markets Diageo expects to make acquisitions of companies with both strong local routes to market and with brands that can be premiumised and appeal to the growing number of middle class consumers. The acquisitions of Mey İçki in Turkey, Ypióca in Brazil, the Serengeti and Meta breweries in Africa, its major shareholding in Shuijingfang in China, its investment in Halico in Vietnam, and from July 2013 its major shareholding in United Spirits Limited (USL) in India, each demonstrate this strategy in action.

Diageo believes it leads the industry in marketing, combining expertise and creative alliances to engage consumers through traditional and digital media channels. This expertise and collaboration, combined with the benefits of global scale and consumer insights, delivers world class marketing campaigns focusing on the range of price points from luxury to more affordable brands; on new consumer groups, such as the emerging middle class, multicultural and female consumers; and on marketing innovation. Marketing spend is focused on the strategic brands and the new high growth markets. Global campaigns are made locally relevant with the use of local agencies. For example, the global Johnnie Walker 'Keep Walking' campaign has been in place for over 10 years and while the campaign is based on the universal appeal of personal progress, each market has local creative executions which reflect local insights.

Diageo's industry leading innovation programme is making a significant contribution to Diageo's net sales and operating profit growth by focusing not only on building a pipeline for the future, but also on sustaining past launches to drive long term value across the brand portfolio. Recent launches have focused on the consumers' desire for luxury, the tastes and increasing affluence of the emerging middle class consumer and increasing the accessibility of spirits through flavour extensions and new packaging and drink formats. Diageo has strong routes to market which leverage local expertise. In the United States, Diageo is required by law to operate through a three-tier distribution system which separates suppliers, distributors and retailers. Diageo works with distributors who provide a substantial dedicated sales team of nearly 3,000 people. Outside of the United States, Diageo owns and controls the route to market in many countries, and in others the route to market is through joint ventures, associates and third party distributors. The recent acquisitions in the new high growth markets have helped to enhance Diageo's routes to market with the addition of the leading spirits company in Turkey, Mey İçki; the second largest brewery in Ethiopia, Meta Abo; the leader in the premium cachaça segment in Brazil, Ypióca; and with investments in a premium local spirit company in China, Shuijingfang, the leading branded spirit company in Vietnam, Halico and the leading beverage alcohol producer in India, USL.

Diageo works in collaboration with its customers to drive profitable category growth, by building partnerships with retailers and on trade customers. The 'Diageo Way of Selling' or the 'Platform for Growth' programmes equip both Diageo and its customers with the tools to be the best sales force in the industry, provide education to its partners and create commercial and strategic value for all parties. The European Customer Collaboration Centre provides a state of the art facility to bring consumer, shopper, retailer and distributor insights together to facilitate integrated planning with customers. These tools enable Diageo to realise its ambition to become an indispensable business partner to its customers.

Diageo has a history of being a sustainable and responsible company dating from Arthur Guinness who undertook philanthropic community programmes and through the 1930s when its predecessor companies marketed their brands in a responsible manner. Diageo understands the social, environmental and economic impact of its activities and has adopted a structured approach to manage these impacts, to build engagement across stakeholders, to create value, especially in the new high growth markets, and to protect Diageo's licence to operate.

Diageo and its employees are proud of the responsible manner in which its brands are marketed and the role that moderate consumption of its brands can play as part of a balanced lifestyle for millions of people. Diageo seeks to be at the forefront of industry efforts to promote responsible drinking and works with key stakeholders to address alcohol misuse.

Diageo's supply organisation is responsible for producing, distilling, brewing, bottling, packaging and distributing its brands. It is committed to efficient, sustainable production. Investment in production facilities is focused on building capacity for the production of spirits and beer, with both high speed and high volume, cost efficient production lines and with flexible production facilities to create an industry leading supply chain for innovation, especially in luxury products. Diageo deploys groundbreaking new technology in its production sites in an effort to deliver cost savings, security of supply and reduction of waste. Diageo is constantly looking at ways to improve water efficiency, reduce water wastage, increase the use of sustainable packaging and reduce pollution, carbon emissions and waste to landfill.

Diageo is committed to generating broad-based prosperity through the value chain and through direct investment in the communities in which it operates, especially in the new high growth markets, by integrating its supply chain into the local community and through direct initiatives such as the 'Learning for Life' and 'Water of Life' programmes in Latin America and Caribbean and Africa.

Diageo believes that industry leading performance will be delivered through a talented and diverse workforce and great leadership. The company has active programmes that ensure the development of its management and leaders. Great leadership combined with a culture of good governance and ethics protect Diageo's reputation and support the sustainable efficient growth of the business.

Smirnoff is the No.1 premium spirit brand in the world, Johnnie Walker is the No.1 scotch whisky in the world, Baileys is No.1 in the global liqueur category, Guinness is No.1 in the global stout segment*. Source: Impact Databank February 2014 / *Plato Logic
We are the leading premium spirits business in the world by volume, by net sales and by operating profit and our brand range includes 14 of the top 100 premium distilled spirits brands worldwide by both value and volume, as defined by Impact Databank.