Blog: Chris Brook-CarterDouble Diageo

Chris Brook-Carter | 4 September 2003

I am just back from the first of two visits in two days to the Diageo HQ in London, today for the company's full year results, while tomorrow's is a special briefing on Smirnoff. Results day was little more relaxed than usual - it was in the company's bar rather than at its investment bank Merrill Lynch - but it was still the usual slick media affair. There was the air of a job well done among the Diageo staff given the tough conditions in the past year, although thanks to 5am start this morning, there was also an air of relief that the day was nearing its close.
Given they have had to integrate the Seagram business during the toughest of years, Diageo's achievement of growth, though not near the levels two years ago, is still worthy of applause.
The most interesting comments from CEO Paul Walsh concerned Diageo's changing perception of the RTD market. Gone are the days of stellar growth. And although he would not be drawn on specific questions concerning growth rates in the UK and US, he did say that the company believed, globally, its RTD brands would grow at the same sort of rates as the parent spirits brands.
How this will change the company's strategy towards its RTDs, which require high levels of innovation, renovation and investment remains to be seen.


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