Business Irish

Sunday 24 September 2017

Jameson grows for the 26th year as Pernod misses profit estimates

Global development: Jameson
Global development: Jameson
Michael Cogley

Michael Cogley

Jameson whiskey has seen its global development boost the profits of Pernod Ricard as 2014/15 saw volume growth for the Irish spirit rise by 8.5pc for the year.

The last year has seen Jameson's 26th year of consecutive growth as it also saw a 10.2pc rise in value growth.

Irish Distillers, which owns Jameson, has invested over €200m doubling capacity in its Midleton Distillery in Cork and Fox and Geese bottling facility in Dublin to meet demand.

The company reported double to triple digit growth in 53 of the 130 plus markets in which Jameson is sold.

According to the Irish Whiskey Association (IWA), there are 26 planned distilleries dotted around Ireland.

The head of the IWA, Miriam Mooney, told the Irish Independent that they are being established partly to meet demand.

"In the last decade the Irish whiskey category grew by almost 200pc and that momentum is showing no sign of slowing down," Ms Mooney said.

"Irish whiskey currently accounts for 4pc of global market share and aims to grow to 12pc by 2030, so there is plenty of opportunity for the category to grow," she added.

"IWA projections are that exports will double from 6.7m nine-litre cases in 2014 to over 12m nine-litre cases in 2020 and double again to 24m cases by 2030."

Meanwhile Irish Distillers' parent company, Pernod Ricard, filed profits below analysts estimates.

A crackdown on lavish spending in China, which cut interest rates amid a slowing economy this week, has directly affected Pernod.

As demand for premium cognac has plunged, the Paris-based distiller has started pushing less expensive liquors such as Ballantine's whisky.

The distiller reported first-half profit from recurring operations of €2.24bn, compared with analyst predictions of €2.26bn.

The profit measure rose 2pc, excluding acquisitions, disposals and currency shifts.

Currency shifts, in particular the stronger dollar, increased sales by €70m.

Pernod has cut jobs as part of a cost-saving programme and is trying to revive Absolut, its biggest brand by volume, where sales fell for the second straight year.

This has been attributed to drinkers shifting to brown spirits such as bourbon, and craft beers.

Revenue totalled €8.56bn, rising 2pc on an organic basis, 0.6pc short of analysts expectations.

Irish Independent

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