Absolut Vodka

Vodka, traditionally known as a smooth, clear liquor with little taste or aroma, derives its name from the Russian word “voda,” meaning water. According to historical accounts, the spirit originated in Russia where it was made from potatoes and used for medicinal purposes.
Today, vodka is the most popular of all distilled spirits and is made primarily from barley, wheat, or rye and serves as the base ingredient for many of the most popular cocktails and mixed drinks. According to Impact Databank, total vodka shipments reached a high of more than 42 million cases in 2003.

{viewonly=registered,special}Vodka is particularly popular in the United States, where nearly 60 percent of all the vodka in the Western world is consumed. In the U.S. market, imported vodka is leading the growth of the category, with consumption of imports nearly doubling since 1996. ABSOLUT ranks as the number-one premium imported vodka in the United States, with a commanding market share over its closest two rivals.

When ABSOLUT was first exported from Sweden in 1979, only 10,000 nine-liter cases were sold in the United States. In just five years, ABSOLUT was available in 18 countries; by 1985 it ranked atop imported vodkas in the United States. Since then, ABSOLUT has continued its strong sales growth worldwide and today is available in 126 markets, ranking as the world’s third-largest spirit brand.


As a premier global brand, ABSOLUT owns the pre-eminent share of growth in the premium vodka category. Shipments increased by 7.7 percent to reach 72.9 million liters in 2003.

A high-quality product like ABSOLUT requires memorable marketing, and much of the ABSOLUT success reflects its unique and ingenious marketing campaign that almost singlehandedly defined the shape of creative magazine advertising for years. In the campaign, the beautiful, artful, chameleon-like bottle is the hero.

The ABSOLUT advertising campaign, nearly a quarter-century later, still follows a carefully developed strategy based on continuity and variety. The ads are witty, sophisticated, and imaginative as they deftly communicate the brand’s values.

Since the campaign’s launch with ABSOLUT PERFECTION in 1980, nearly 1,500 ABSOLUT ads have been produced. In 1999, Advertising Age listed the ABSOLUT advertising campaign among the 10-best advertising campaigns of the 20th century.

To cultivate its image, ABSOLUT forged partnerships with art and fashion icons. In 1985, pop artist Andy Warhol was commissioned to paint a picture of the ABSOLUT bottle. Warhol, enthralled by the artfulness of the bottle, happily obliged. Other well-known artists such as Keith Haring and Kenny Scharff followed him. By 1988, a number of noted artists had featured the bottle in their work, and ABSOLUT gained enormous amounts of unsolicited submissions from artists all over the world.

ABSOLUT linked itself with fashion in 1988 with the ABSOLUT CAMERON ad that gained an avalanche of publicity. On the first day of publication, nearly 5,000 women called the phone number written in small type at the bottom of the ad and expressed interest in purchasing the dress featured in the advertisement, which was not even for sale. Ever since, ABSOLUT fashion projects have reached far beyond the inner fashion circles.

ABSOLUT is recognized and honored worldwide as one of the leading premium vodkas and brands. In 2002, Forbes named ABSOLUT the number-one luxury brand in the world. In the 25 years of the ABSOLUT advertising campaign, the brand has won more than 300 awards for its advertising.

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