Champagne house Vranken-Pommery Monopole has posted an 11% jump in profits for 2006 thanks to growing sales.

Vranken, the world's number two Champagne house, saw operating profit reach EUR45.3m (US$60.5m) last year, up from EUR40.7m a year earlier.

Revenue rose 9.1% to EUR268.3m as Vranken saw its sales reach over 20m bottles, a rise of almost 7% on the year, as its business basked in the growing demand for Champagne in key markets like the UK.

"We achieved our sales volume objective one year ahead of schedule, while continuing to improve our margins," Chairman and CEO Paul-François Vranken said today (4 April).

"In the years ahead, we'll focus on improving the price mix, leveraging the key advantages provided by our innovative brand strategy, and on expanding in international markets, with the support of our recently expanded teams."

The company said that its more expensive lines had driven growth with Pommery and Heidsieck & Co. Monopole enjoying the strongest growth, in France and internationally.

Champagne accounts for some 92% of Vranken's sales but the company said sales of its Port brand, Rozès, also grew last year, topping 2m bottles.