• Wines & spirits sales up 4% to EUR1.03bn (US$1.17bn)
  • Organic wines & spirits sales increase 6%
  • "Better momentum" in China
  • Overall LVMH sales up 4%
China continued its return to form for Moet Hennessy

China continued its return to form for Moet Hennessy

Strong Champagne sales in Q1 combined with a bounce-back in China to give LVMH's wines & spirits unit, Moët Hennessy, a solid start to the year.

Moët Hennessy sales were up 4% to EUR1.03bn (US$1.17bn) in the three months to the end of March, LVMH said yesterday. Organic sales for Moët Hennessy, which accounts for 12% of LVMH's total sales, increased by 6%.

The luxury goods company, which controls the Moët & Chandon Champagne and Hennessy Cognac brands, said Champagne had a strong start to the year, especially in Europe where growth continued. Meanwhile, Hennessy maintained its "remarkable performance" in the US.

In China, the first quarter showed "better momentum" compared to a Q1 drag last year because of destocking by distributors, LVMH said. The improvement continues LVMH's China rebound from the second half of last year, which pushed up Moët Hennessy's full-year profits. Luxury goods producers in the country have been hard hit over the past two years by anti-extravagance measures.

Overall, LVMH sales were up 4% to EUR8.6bn in Q1.

"LVMH will continue to focus its efforts on developing its brands, will maintain a strict control over costs and will target its investments on the quality, the excellence and the innovation of its products and their distribution," the company said.

The Q1 results were released after markets closed yesterday. As of 1132 today, LVMH's share price was down 2.3% to EUR142.80. The company does not release quarterly profit figures.

The LVMH guide to entry-level luxury – Focus