FRANCE – French beverage giant Pernod Ricard has delivered sustained profitable growth of 17% organic sales rise for fiscal 2022 that totaled €10.701billion (US$10.64B), driven by double-digit gains for all spirits categories.

For the year ending 30 June 2022, Absolut vodka owner has achieved its fastest growth rate in over 30 years, delivering a record €3 billion (US$2.98B) profit from recurring operations at a record operating margin of 28.3%.

Pernod Ricard said sales benefitted from the ‘strong recovery’ of the on-trade, off-trade resilience and the ‘rapid rebound’ of travel retail, despite low passenger traffic in China.

Alexandre Ricard, Pernod Ricard’s chairman and chief executive, was delighted, calling the financial year to the end of June a “symbolic milestone” in which the French group’s sales surpassed the €10 billion (US$9.94B) record.

He added that growth was driven by all regions, categories, price points, and channels, with a comparable contribution from both mature and emerging markets

The company’s strategic international brands grew by 18%, boosted by Jameson Irish whiskey (up 24%), Scotch brands Chivas Regal (up 29%) and Ballantine’s (up 24%), Absolut (up 19%), and Martell Cognac (up 7%).

Jameson surpassed 10 million nine-liter cases during the 12 months and is targeting 15m cases by 2030.

In addition, Strategic Local Brands had an increase of 18%, with very strong growth notably led by Seagram’s Indian whiskies, Kahlua, Olmeca, and Seagram’s Gin while Strategic wines, on the other hand, declined by 4%.

 The ‘specialty brands’ division had a jump of 24%, with ‘continued very rapid development’ driven by American whiskies (up 38%), gin (up 43%), and agave spirits brands (up 21%).

This growth in the specialty brands category was double sales compared to the full-year results of 2019, according to the company.

Meanwhile, dynamism in the company’s Must-Win Markets was strong, notably India having 26% and Travel Retail at +48%, with the USA at +8% and China at +5% as well as outstanding performance across Europe, Africa, Central, and South America.

In terms of regions, the Americas rose by 12%, bolstered by North America and Latin America whereas Asia, Pacific, and African regions jumped by 19%, driven by India, Turkey, China, and Sub-Saharan Africa while sales in Europe also soared by 19%, boosted by Spain, Germany, France, Poland, and the UK.

Ricard noted: “Most importantly, our performance was sustainable thanks to the real progress we’ve made on delivering our strategic roadmap “Good Times from a Good Place. There has been a newfound appreciation for conviviality since the Covid outbreak.

While we are faced with a challenging and volatile environment, I am confident that our unique competitive advantages and the rapid deployment of our digital transformation will enable us to deliver our FY23 to FY25 medium-term financial framework.”

The company is confident that its unique competitive advantages and the rapid deployment of digital transformation will enable it to deliver on the FY23 to FY25 medium-term financial framework.

Liked this article? Subscribe to Food Business Africa News, our regular email newsletters with the latest news insights from Africa and the World’s food and agro industry. SUBSCRIBE HERE.