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Campari reports positive results from Jamaican rum portfolio

Published:Wednesday | March 11, 2015 | 12:00 AMMcPherse Thompson

The top six international franchises were up by three per cent in 2014, driven by Campari, Aperol and the Jamaican rum portfolio, accelerating their growth in the fourth quarter, as well as the SKYY franchise that stabilised its trend within a very competitive United States environment, it said.

Aperol, Campari, the Jamaican rum portfolio and the tequilas showed a positive progression in the United States market, Gruppo Campari said in a release highlighting its 2014 financial results.

Sales in Jamaica, which account for 6.5 per cent of total group sales, declined organically by 4.4 per cent in 2014 "driven by soft performance of its non-core business", but was up 1.8 per cent in the fourth quarter, and was partially offset by the positive results of the Jamaican rum portfolio and Campari.

exchange rate effect

"The exchange rate effect was -8.5 per cent and the change in perimeter was -5.6 per cent, relating to the termination of distribution agreements of select consumer products in Jamaica," the company said.

However, it said the Jamaican rum portfolio, including Appleton, Wray & Nephew White Overproof and Coruba, showed overall very good results with organic growth of 4.4 per cent, improving progressively throughout the year, mainly driven by the United States market.

Both Canada and Jamaica showed an improving trend, indicating that they have started to benefit from new marketing strategies, the spirits company indicated.

In 2014, the increase in Campari's group sales were driven by organic sales growth of 3.4 per cent, with acceleration in the fourth quarter, up 4.2 per cent. All regions showed positive performance, the company said.

The Americas was up by four per cent, mitigated by continuing realignment of shipment with positive underlying depletions and consumption trends in the US, particularly for Wild Turkey bourbon, and continued strong growth momentum in Argentina and Brazil.

Italy increased by 3.5 per cent, driven by aperitifs, particularly Aperol and the single serve aperitifs. Organic sales growth in the rest of Europe was 3.2 per cent and was attributed to a solid performance across key markets, particularly in Russia and Western European markets, compensating the softness in Germany despite the improvement in the fourth quarter.

Australia remained weak

The rest of the world showed positive organic sales performance of 1.5 per cent. Australia remained weak as expected, and was more than offset by the positive development of emerging markets, particularly Nigeria, South Africa and China, and Global Travel Retail, Gruppo, Campari said.

Chief executive officer of Gruppo Campari, Bob Kunze-Concewitz, said, "Key performance indicators in 2014 were in line with expectations."

He said the spirits company "expect that the volatility in some emerging markets and the price competition in some core regions for the group will continue also in 2015, thus limiting the visibility at this stage".

"However, we expect the business overall and margins to be positively impacted by the positive performance of the top five spirit franchises, in particular the aperitifs business, the rum portfolio and the American whiskies," he said.

Gruppo Campari operates in Jamaica through subsidiary J. Wray & Nephew Limited.

mcpherse.thompson@gleanerjm.com