After a miserable 2013-2014, French liquor manufacturer Pernod Ricard has managed turnover growth in this fiscal year's first quarter, despite a weak Chinese market.
Still a weak Chinese market
Pernod Ricard managed a 1 % turnover growth in the first quarter of this fiscal year, reaching 2.04 billion euro. The company now forecasts a 1 to 3 % turnover growth for the full fiscal year.
The all-important Chinese market however is still struggling: in the June-September period, sales dropped 9 % - still much better than the 23 % sales plummet in the same period last year. Pernod Ricard, like its competitors, is waiting for Chinese New Year, on 19 February 2015, and is hoping that will help turn things around and boost the Chinese economy.
"There are signs things are improving, but the market is still shrinking, which goes to show it is still unstable", according to Gilles Bogaert, Pernod Ricard's financial director. The group is currently the world's second largest liquor manufacturer.
Chinese brandy consumption is a highlight for the company, as it grew 11 % in the past quarter, even though turnover still dropped 4 %. Whiskey sales, both in turnover and volume, are still slipping.