just On Call - Tequila is "very important" for us - Beam Inc CEO
Beam's tequila brand Sauza saw 6% sales growth in H1
The head of Beam Inc has said that Tequila is "very important" for the group and predicts it will be an "attractive" global category for the long-term.
Speaking to analysts following the company's half-year results today (2 August), Matt Shattock, Beam's CEO, said the Tequila market is bouncing back following the economic downturn in the US. "What's encouraging is we are seeing some growth come back to the market and gettting some traction," he said.
"From our point of view, it is a reflection of our decision to shift towards brand building, rather than price battling."
Shattock said the reach of some of Beam's marketing exercises behind its leading Tequila brand, Sourza, has been "extraordinary".
He added: "It's a little bit behind, but the consumption levels are trending in the right direction and we have some exciting packaging re-launches coming in the back half of this year."
Earlier today, Beam reported that Sauza, one of its "power brands" along with Jim Beam and Maker's Mark, has seen 6% comparable net sales growth in H1.
Meanwhile, Beam's latest acquisition, Pinnacle vodka, appears to be performing well. CFO Bob Probst told analysts the brand was enjoying double-digit growth, but admitted it was "early days".
Looking at its markets, Shattock admitted it was a "two-part" story, with Beam's domestic US market performing strongly, offset against a "softer" Europe. Spain is particularly "challenging and continues to decline", he said, but he pointed to strong demand for its Bourbon brands in Germany, the world's third largest market for the category.
Shattock said the group was looking forward to the second-half of the year with confidence and aimed to deliver "double-digit earnings growth for the full-year".
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