Diageo has announced its intention to take on Bacardi to become the number one rum company in the world by 2015.
The owner of rum brands Captain Morgan, Bundaberg and Pampero currently has a 17% share of the UK rum market and sees further growth coming from golden and dark rum and golden rum-based spirits.
To kick-start the push, the company has earmarked £7m for its Morgan's Spiced brand, renaming it Captain Morgan's Spiced and investing in a TV campaign and on-trade push.
"Consumers may already be aware of the Captain Morgan brand from the dark rum currently available in the UK market," said marketing manager Ali Wilkes.
"The addition of the Captain figurehead to the title and the label of Morgan's Spiced will create synergy across the two brands and also give Morgan's Spiced an identifiable personality."
The campaign will be aimed at 18 to 24-year-old male drinkers and focus on the "Captain and cola" serve, which is already the number two bar call in the US, according to Diageo.
As well as the planned TV campaign, set for this autumn, the company is joining forces with the NUS, Luminar and other pub companies to host 3,000 party nights, due to be held between this June and June of next year.
Sampling, PoS kits and visits from the Captain and his "Morganettes" will create buzz and excitement around the brand, said Wilkes.