Campari released its Q1 results today

Campari released its Q1 results today

Political change in Italy has brought renewed consumer confidence to the country, according to Gruppo Campari's CEO.

Speaking to analysts today (13 May), Bob Kunze-Concewitz said that despite increases off a weak base, on-trade improvements in its domestic market were a cause for optimism in the wake of a new Prime Minister. “Overall, we're feeling better about Italy, though the situation remains precarious,” Kunze-Concewitz said. 

In first-quarter results released earlier today, Italy-based Campari showed a recovery in its domestic market, with sales rising by 5%. The country started to improve for Campari late last year after a disappointing 2012 in which sales fell 3%. It now accounts for 27.3% of group sales, compared to 23.8% a year earlier.

Kunze-Concewitz said today: “We've had a change on the political scene and that has had a positive impact. There has been a return of confidence to consumers and we've seen improvement.”

The quarter also saw a return to form for Aperol in Germany after the aperitif struggled last year against so-called “copy cat” brands. Kunze-Concewitz said he expected the improvement - so far mainly in the on-trade - to eventually push through to the off-trade.

“The proof in the pudding and we will see at the end of the summer season if (Aperol) is also spreading in the off-premise,” he said. “Trends from on to off usually have a time lag, but we have seen consumer fatigue with the copycats.”

Previously Kunze-Concewitz has called the emergence of copycat brands a “headache”.