Guinness sales rise 5pc overall
GUINNESS sales climbed 5pc in the last six months but most of the growth was in emerging markets as trading remained stagnant in Ireland and the rest of Europe.
In an interim management statement covering the six months to December 31 -- the first half of its financial year -- Guinness maker Diageo said sales of the black stuff climbed 5pc even as sales in western Europe fell 2pc.
In Ireland, Diageo said the total alcoholic drinks market declined 2pc during the six months but their brands maintained market share by value and volume. Guinness retained its 32pc share of the long alcoholic drink business.
The problems in Ireland were reflected across the rest of the continent. Net sales were flat in Europe and only rose 5pc in the US, as Diageo shifted its focus to Africa, Latin America and Asia Pacific.
Sales rose 7pc to £5.75bn (€6.85bn), generating operating profits that climbed 9pc to £1.86bn.
Chief executive Paul Walsh said: "We are cautious as to the consumer and economic trends we will face in 2012 but these first-half results have positioned us well for the future."