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Champagne provides some fizz for Pernod Ricard as annual sales nudge ahead by 2%

Published:  27 August, 2015

Champagne and Irish whiskey were among the main drivers of global growth for Pernod Ricard in 2014/15, though the spirits giant turned in only a modest overall sales increase of 2%. The company described the performance as "solid".

Mumm grew volumes by 13% and Perrier-Jouet by 11% over the previous year, while Jameson whiskey volumes were up 9%.

The Glenlivet was up 7% but another Scotch whisky in its portfolio, Chivas Regal, saw sales drop by 1%.

Absolut (0%), Havana Club (+1%) and Beefeater (+2%) saw little or no gains on the previous year.

Absolut was hit by a "challenging" US market but grew in other territories, Pernod Ricard said.

In the UK, the top 14 brands in its portfolio increased sales by 9% with Mumm, Jameson and Absolut leading the way. Campo Viejo Rioja growth was described by the company as "significant".

Total group sales for the year were €8.6 billion (£6.3 billion) with Asia a major driver of growth. Sales in India were ahead by 18% and China saw an improvement from last year's decline of 23% to a fall of just 2%.

Sales in Europe were reported as stable.

Chief executive officer Alexandre Ricard, said: "Our full-year results are solid, delivering improving sales and profit from recurring operations in line with guidance.

"Our strategy has remained consistent and is delivering results.

"For 2015/16, despite a challenging and volatile macroeconomic environment, we aim to continue gradually improving our business performance.

"We will continue to support priority brands and innovations while focusing on operational excellence."