Domestic and surging export sales of its Jacob's Creek range and other brands gave Orlando Wyndham, Australia's fourth largest wine company, an after-tax profit of $A40.98m ($20.73m) for calendar 2000.

The results compared favourably with the $A33.71m profits of 1999, according to accounts lodged with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

Unlike the other Australian majors - Southcorp, BRL Hardy and Berlinger Blass - Orlando Wyndham, owned by the French Pernod Ricard giant, is not listed on the Australian stock exchange.

The company attributed the improved results to exports of the Jacob's Creek and Wyndham Estate brands, aided by the weak Australian dollar, and solid domestic sales.

The company is in line for further improvements in 2001 and 2002 as Jacob's Creek sales worldwide were estimated at 4.2m cases in 2000. Just-drinks.com reported last month that Orlando Wyndham executives are predicting sales of 5.3m cases this year and another record for 2002 in the wake of new product launches and the continuing soft dollar.

Orlando Wyndham's major export markets are the UK, US, Canada and New Zealand. The 2000 profit was a 22% rise on 1999. Operating revenue was $A471.9m, up 20.5%.