Vranken-Pommery Monopole has posted a steady lift in sales for 2007.

The French Champagne group said today (23 January) that sales in the year increased by 6.9% on 2006, totalling EUR286.8m (US$417.9m). The company credited the performance in part to a 7.3% lift in Champagne sales in the year, with the number of bottles sold rising by 2.9% as the group "pursued its strategy of increasing value rather than volumes".

Vranken Pommery's international brands - Vranken, Pommery, Heidsieck & Co. Monopole and Charles Lafitte - reported an 11.1% increase in revenue.

In France, Champagne sales were up by 6.5%, while sales in export markets - which account for 45% of total sales - increased by 8.4% over 2006. Growth was led by sales in Europe and Japan.

The company's Rozes Port wine "again reported revenue growth", led by the marketing of Douro Superior premium vintages.

Total sales in the final quarter of the year were up by 14.5% on the corresponding quarter a year earlier, reaching EUR144m.

"We're very satisfied with the increase in late-year sales and with our growth throughout the year," said Paul-François Vranken, the company's chairman and CEO. "Our strategy of strengthening our premium cuvées has produced results, in France as well as in international markets."

Full results for 2007 from Vranken-Pommery will be released in early April.