Champagne producer Boizel Chanoine has posted a 21% leap in net profits but said it remained "prudent" about its outlook for the year ahead.

Boizel, which in January snapped up rival Champagne house Lanson International in a EUR122.7m (US$151.4m) deal, yesterday (18 April) reported net profit of EUR7.9m for 2005. Sales rose 10.3% to EUR97.1m.

"The growth of the group's brands was higher than the growth of the sector, which rose by 2% in volumes and 3.5% in value terms," Boizel said. However, the company said rising interest rates made it "prudent" about the outlook for 2006.

"Given an uncertain economic environment, notably in Europe, the group is prudent about making forecasts for the current (year)," Boizel said.

The acquisition of Lanson presented "a significant challenge", but in the medium term would allow the group to improve its visibility, it added.