Pernod Ricard has posted a healthy lift in sales for the first half of its fiscal year.

The France-based drinks company said today (24 January) that sales in the six months to the end of December rose by 5.9% to EUR3.51bn (US$5.13bn) on the same period a year earlier. In organic terms, sales climbed by an impressive 10.1%.

Despite a negative foreign exchange impact of 2.5%, due in part to the loss in value of the US dollar, Pernod saw all of its geographic regions deliver growth. Asia/Rest of the World led the pack, with sales up by 10.7% - 13% in organic terms - to EUR1.09bn. North America slipped by 1.4%, but was up by 10% in organic terms to EUR970m. Europe, not including France, was up 7.4% and by 9% in organic terms to EUR1.26bn. France, meanwhile, saw sales up by 8%, thanks to an "outstanding" second quarter.

In category terms, sales from spirits brands grew by 11%, led by Martell Cognac, which saw sales leap by 27% on the corresponding period a year earlier. The group's wine business recorded organic growth of 6% in value terms, driven by "premiumisation, price increases and innovation".

Company CEO and chairman Patrick Ricard described the six-month performance as "historic".

"These results and the very positive sales outlook for the second half-year enable me to be confident for the full financial year and to revise our growth guidance upwards," Ricard said.

Full-year performance is now expected to deliver growth in operating profit of around 12% year-on-year, up from the previous estimate of 10%.