Bacardi Ltd, the Bermuda-based maker of Bacardi rum, posted record sales for the fiscal year ended March 31, even as net earnings fell, the company's annual report said.

Sales rose to US$3.1 billion, in part due to a strong exchange rate against the euro, the introduction of new products and gains in ready-to-drink beverages like Bacardi Breezers. Bombay Sapphire gin saw double-digit volume growth, though Bacardi rum sales were flat and Dewar's sales fell 5%, the report said.

Net earnings fell to US$390m, from US$456m a year earlier, partly because Bacardi's sales mix included more lower-margin products and its figures excluded last-year's one-time tax rebate from the Mexican government.

Dividends rose to $6.56 per share, from $6.40.