Pernod released its Q1 results today

Pernod released its Q1 results today

Earlier today (24 October), Pernod Ricard released its sales and volumes figures for the 2013-14 first quarter. Here's a closer look at the company's performance in the three months to the end of September by region and brand.

Regions

Asia/Rest of the World.

The region - which last fiscal year accounted for 40% of total sales - saw sales drop by 14%, a fall that Pernod Ricard said was “exacerbated by unfavourable technical effects” such as currency exchange. On an organic basis, the region posted a 6% Q1 sales drop after an 11% increase over the same period last year. In full-year figures, released in August, the region increased sales by 7% organically.

  • China shipments were down double-digits in value, while sales were “in sharp decline” because of anti-gifting measures. Martell depletions were in slight decline.
  • India continued double-digit growth as it saw double-digit growth of the three Indian whisky brands, Blender's Pride, Seagram's Imperial Blue and Royal Stag.
  • South Korea posted a double-digit drop of Imperial and Ballantine’s ahead of an Imperial packaging change, but there was continued strong growth of Absolut driven by the rapid expansion of on-trade.
  • In Thailand there was a “very sharp decline” of 100 Pipers.

Americas

Sales in the region fell by 8%, with Pernod blaming high comparisons from the same period last quarter. On an organic basis, sales were flat. Pernod said the region was “still in good growth”, however the on-trade is now in decline.

  • In the US, Jameson was the main growth driver, up 23% in Q1. Other brands also saw growth, including Chivas (8%), Perrier-Jouet (15%) and Glenlivet (10%).
  • Brazil saw a “return to growth” in the quarter, with Absolut sales up 30%, Chivas up 13% and Ballantine's up 26%.
  • Mexico posted a single-digit sales decline in a slowing market in which Scotch whisky was the only category in growth.

Europe

Sales in the region fell by 1%, but on an organic basis Western Europe sales were up 2% and Eastern Europe up 8%. In Western Europe sales of Havana Club in the quarter were up 25%, while Absolut saw a 16% increase. There was “continued decline” in Spain, Pernod said.

Brands 

The group's top 14 spirits and brands, which account for 64% of its sales, posted a 5% sales fall and a 1% volumes drop. There was a “significant decline of Martell primarily due to China” where depletions have slowed and are now in slight decline in value, Pernod said. Martell sales fell 12% while volumes dropped by 15%.

Ballantine's sales dropped by 11% as volumes remained flat and Royal Salute dropped 21% in sales and volumes. Pernod attributed the declines to Asia, especially China. Jameson sales were up by 13% and volumes up by 10% thanks to strong performance in the US.

Pernod's “priority premium wine” portfolio, which includes Jacob's Creek and Campo Viejo, saw sales up 1% and volumes stay flat. Pernod's local brands portfolio was up 8% in sales and 11% in volumes. ArArAt (Russia) and Passport (Russia, Brazil and South Africa) achieved double-digit growth, taking advantage of their positioning as entry-level imported spirits, Pernod said.