• Beam Global Q1 operating profits increase by 25.5% to US$144.4m
  • Net sales at the drinks unit up by 17.4% to $673.1m
  • Fortune Brands' operating profits, sales rise by 2.6% and 8.1%, respectively
  • Group net profits up by 12.5% to $81.2m
  • Company separation scheduled for early in Q4
Fortune Brands has upped its FY target for Beam Global Spirits & Wine

Fortune Brands has upped its FY target for Beam Global Spirits & Wine

Fortune Brands has hailed the performance of its Beam Global Spirits & Wine unit in the first quarter, ahead of the proposed separation of the group.

The company, which announced last year that it will become a standalone spirits business, posted its figures for the first three months of 2011 earlier today (5 May). Operating profits at the drinks unit came in 25.5% up on a year earlier, at US$144.4m, as sales increased by 17.4% to $673.1m.

Operating profits for the group, which also consists of home & security and golf divisions, inched up by 2.6% to $160.5m, with total net sales rising by 8.1% to $1.76bn. Total net profits for the three-month period were up by 12.5% at $81.2m.

“Fortune Brands continued to deliver strong growth in sales and earnings as each of our three businesses outperformed their respective markets in the quarter,” said Fortune's chairman and CEO, Bruce Carbonari. "(Beam Global) outperformed key markets including the US, UK, Spain, Germany, Australia and India. Comparable operating income grew at a low-single-digit rate, as expected."

Looking forward, Fortune said it has upped its full-year operating profits target for Beam, from its prior target of low-to-mid-single digits to a mid-single-digit rate in 2011.

Carbonari also said that the group is on target to complete its move to a "pure-play spirits company" by early in the fourth quarter.

Click here for the official statement from Fortune Brands.