German wine supplier Hawesko has signalled its confidence for the rest of 2006 after posting a set of strong first-half figures.

Hawesko reported on Wednesday (26 July) a 53% leap in operating profit to EUR4.9m (US$6.2m) for the first six months of the year on the back of an 8% rise in sales to EUR132.9m.

The company's CEO, Alexander Margaritoff, said: "After the first half of the year our mood is very positive. The current market trends indicate that after a difficult phase lasting several years, consumers are once again ready to enjoy the finer things in life - such as good wine.

"During this time we have done our homework and pursued our strategy unwaveringly. Today we have a robust structure, so that we look forward to the second half of the year with optimism."

Hawesko is the leading supplier of fine wine and Champagne in Germany.