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FRANCE: Marie Brizard profits up as spirits sales double

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French drinks group Marie Brizard saw net profit rise 22% last year to EUR11.9m (US$14.4m) as acquisitions helped drive revenues higher.

Marie Brizard, set to be acquired by French spirits group Belvédère, saw sales rise 16% to EUR334m. Sales of spirits doubled to EUR106.4m, helped by the acquisition of the brands of William Pitters in March 2005.

However, wine sales fell 4.6% to EUR165.8m. Non-alcoholic drinks sales were stable at EUR56.9m.

Marie Brizard said that the group's performance in the three first months of 2006 confirmed trends it had seen in 2005.

Belvédère is set to close its takeover of Marie Brizard on 15 April.


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