Belvedere saw group sales fall in its first quarter

Belvedere saw group sales fall in its first quarter

Tough trading in Poland's vodka market has seen Belvédère's first quarter net sales slide nearly 5%.

The French group said yesterday (3 June) that group sales in the period fell 4.8% to EUR188.7m. In Poland, until now a strong growth area for the loss-making company and representing almost 60% of its turnover, sales were down by 9.1% largely due to a decline in the country's vodka market, the group said.

In France, however, sales rose by 8.4%, driven by spirits which in last year's corresponding quarter were hit hard by duty rises. 

The company, whose shareholders include actor Bruce Willis, did not disclose its earnings for the quarter. 

Commenting on the results, Belvédère chairman and CEO, Christophe Trylinski, said: "The performance of our brands as a whole demonstrates the dynamic
quality and effectiveness of our business model. The decline in turnover can in part be explained by a gradual moving away from non-profitable activities."

He added that the group was committed to a strategy "based on development through innovation and commercial action."