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Berry Bros & Rudd sees sales rise

Published:  17 September, 2018

Berry Bros & Rudd (BBR) has seen sales rise by £16M, for the year ending 31 March 2018.

The group said it had seen “strong underlying sales growth” with gross turnover for the group hitting £186m (excluding accounting adjustment for en primeur sales). This was compared to just over £170M for the previous year.

Operating profits were down 74.8% to £158M compared to the previous year “driven by a reduced gross profit in our core UK business driven by mix, and an increase in depreciation as a result of our IT investment,” it said.

BBR also said that this year it had experienced the third largest En Primeur Bordeaux campaign in its history and strong En Primeur Burgundy sales.

Its fine wine business had a good year with sales up by £12M year on year.

In June, it opened its new shop at 62 to 63 Pall Mall, which replaced its No 3 St James’s Street, where it re-established a private client advisory space. The company said that the new shop had seen growth of 20% during the period.

The company took the decision to sell The Glenrothes brands back to Highland Distillers with the disposal completing in April 2017.

It said, despite this, spirits remain an “integral” part of its portfolio and its international business “exceeded all of its targets.”

To strengthen the spirits portfolio and distribution reach the company said that on 30th November 2017 it had invested further into Anchor Brewers and Distillers (now Potrero Distilling Holdings) increasing its shareholding to a controlling interest at 61.5%.

Chief executive at the company Dan Jago joined the company in October 2015 to help turnaround the business.

He has had a career that has included joint-MD at Bibendum, global wine director for Tesco before taking the role at BBR.

In an interview with Harpers last month Jago revealed BBR’s business split roughly one half private clients, a quarter overseas business (through offices in Singapore, Hong Kong and Tokyo, plus a San Francisco-based spirits offshoot servicing America), and a quarter on- and off-trade supply via agency-led wholesale arm FMV (which it acquired in 2003).

He confirmed that the company was in growth and the “trend has been from fairly consistent period of losses into fairly consistent period of profit.”