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Pernod Ricard records 13% drop in India sales in July-September

01:25 AM Oct 23, 2020 | Agencies

French wine and spirits major Pernod Ricard on Thursday said its Indian business witnessed a 13 per cent decline in the July-September quarter amid COVID-19 related disruptions.

Though demand improved in the July-September quarter in the Indian market in comparison to the preceding April-June period, an overall decline in sales was reported.

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Pernod Ricard follows July-June financial year.

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"Q1 FY21 trends are improving vs Q4 FY20 but demand is still in double-digit decline due to COVID-19," said Pernod Ricard in a post earning presentation.

It is witnessing "sell-in ahead of sell-out" in key states in order to avoid supply chain disruption ahead of the festive season, the company added.

In the Indian market, it has recorded a decline in the sales of local brands under Seagram's whiskies portfolio.

However, "strategic international brands (are) very resilient with, in particular, double-digit growth of Jameson and Ballentine's", it added. Overall, the company -- which owns international premium brands such as Chivas Regal, Ballantine's, The Glenlivet, Royal Salute, Jameson Irish whisky and ABSOLUT vodka -- has reported 6 per cent decline in its organic sales to 2.23 billion euros.

"Sales for the first quarter of FY21 totalled 2,236 million euros, with an organic decline of 6 per cent," resulted as in the first quarter as channels such as Off-trade remaining very resilient in the USA and Europe.

Though Pernod Ricard has a good start in the US and China with "strong shipments ahead of the festive season" but India sales saw double-digit decline, said Pernod Ricard.

In the strategic local brands, sales were down 6 per cent, with decline of Seagram's Indian whiskies but there was double-digit growth of Kahlua, Passport, Ramazzotti and Wiser's, it added.

Pernod Ricard India, a fully owned subsidiary of Pernod Ricard SA, holds one of the most dynamic and premium portfolios in the industry led by Seagram's whiskies which include Royal Stag, Royal Stag Barrel Select, Blenders Pride, Blenders Pride Reserve Collection, Imperial Blue and 100 Pipers.

Besides, there was partial On-trade reopening, though channel still disrupted and there was "significant decline" in travel retail, in spite of some domestic travel resuming.

Pernod Ricard Chairman and CEO Alexandre Ricard said: "Our first quarter is encouraging. Sales were still in decline, but the business has recovered significantly vs Q4 FY20, thanks to the partial reopening of the On-trade and the strong resilience of our brands in the Off-trade."

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