• H1 net profits down to EUR231,000 (US$258,000) from EUR16.8m
  • Net sales in the six month to the end of June down 22% to EUR108m
  • Operating profits down 78% to EUR5.2m
  • Volumes down 28% to 44.1m litres
Stock Spirits operates mainly in Central and Eastern Europe

Stock Spirits operates mainly in Central and Eastern Europe

Stock Spirits has posted a sharp drop in first half sales and profits, but said Poland's performance improved “significantly” after weakness in the country dragged on Q1.

Net profits fell to EUR231,000 (US$258,000) in the first six months of the year from EUR16.8m last year, the UK-based spirits company, which operates mainly in Central & Eastern Europe, said today. Net sales dropped by 22% to EUR108m in the same period while operating profits were down 78% to EUR5.2m.

The company blamed aggressive competition and last year's excise duty increase for continuing problems in Poland that drove the “disappointing” sales and profits falls. However, vodka volume declines in the overall Polish market lessened, from 3.6% in H1 last year to 2.7% in the same period this year, according to Nielsen figures cited by Stock.

For a look at Stock Spirits' half-year performance on a regional basis, click here

Stock said it is working to turn around its Polish performance and “is cautiously optimistic” about the rest of the year.

“Having come through a very difficult period, we have put the building blocks in place to ensure that the group is well placed to capitalise on the opportunities available in the Central and Eastern European region and the improved trading conditions we experienced in Q2 have continued into the start of Q3,” said Stock's CEO, Chris Heath.

The company's share price was relatively flat in morning trading: As of 10.42 it was up by 0.27% at GBP182.75.

To read the company's full results, click here.