Corby Distilleries has reported a slip in full-year profits, but was buoyed in the fourth quarter by Absolut Vodka and lower advertising and promotion spend.

Net profits for the 12 months to the end of June fell by 5% to C$30.4m (US$28m), compared to $31.9m in the previous year, Corby said this week.

Profits fell due to one-off charges and unfavourably currency rates, said the group, which holds the licence for Pernod Ricard wine and spirits brands in Canada, as well as owning Wiser's Canadian whiskies, Lamb's rum and Polar Ice vodka.

Despite the full-year slip, earnings rose by 24% in the fourth quarter, said Corby, thanks to the contribution of Absolut Vodka - aquired by Pernod Ricard last year - and also lower marketing spend versus the prior year.

Net sales for the full-year rose by 3% to c$152.6m, and by 1% in the fourth quarter, Corby said. But, operating profits for the year fell by 3% to C$43.4m.

The Seagram Coolers brand had a particularly bad year, with retail sales volumes sliding 20% for the 12 months.

"I am pleased with the Company's performance during such turbulent economic conditions," said new Corby president and CEO Patrick O'Driscoll.

"We have successfully transitioned the senior management team during the past couple of months and we are encouraged that the company will continue to be managed by industry veterans focused on expanding market share and increasing shareholder value."

For the full announcement, click here.