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Stronger Second Half Performance Drives Growth at Diageo

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Stronger Second Half Performance Drives Growth at Diageo

Stronger Second Half Performance Drives Growth at Diageo
August 26
14:01 2010

A stronger second half performance has helped global alcoholic drinks giant Diageo to increase reported operating profit by 6.5% to £2.574b, aied by exchange rate movement, for the year ended June 30th 2010 as gains in developing international markets offset declines in the mature markets of North America and Europe. On a reported basis, net sales increased by 5% to £9.78b during the year. Organic growth in both operating profit and net sales for the year was 2%.

Exceptional operating costs amounted to £177m, up from £170m in 2009, and included a net charge of £142m in respect of restructuring programmes. These costs included £85 million (2009 – £166 million) for the global restructuring programme announced in February 2009, £93 million (2009 – £nil) for the restructuring of Global Supply operations announced in July 2009 principally in Scotland, £12 million for the restructuring of brewing operations in Ireland announced in 2008, and a £48 million net credit (2009 – £nil) for the restructuring of the wines business in the US.

Diageo’s profit before taxation increased by 12.5% to £2.24b in the year.

Paul Walsh, chief executive of Diageo.

“As expected this has been a year of challenges and opportunities. Our performance was much stronger in the second half than in the first – our performance in the developing markets drove overall growth while markets in North America and Europe remained weak. However, even though markets and categories have been affected in different ways and to differing degrees, we have been consistent in our focus to deliver growth and build a stronger business for the future,” says Paul Walsh, chief executive of Diageo.

“The impact of the global economic crisis varied by market and the strength of the recovery appears to be equally variable. However, as we demonstrated this year, the global diversity of our business, together with the strength and range of our brands and the agility we have demonstrated gives us confidence that in fiscal 2011 we will be able to improve on the organic operating profit growth we have delivered this year.”

Mixed Fortunes in Europe

 

Europe remained a challenging region, impacted by weak consumer confidence and economic uncertainty. Diageo’s volumes rose by 1% but net sales declined by 2% and operating profit by 1% as marketing spend was cut by 6%.

Solid results were delivered in Great Britain where volume and net sales were up 9% and 5% respectively. Diageo also achieved a strong performance in Russia with double-digit growth in both volume and net sales. This led to a significant increase in share in Scotch whisky as Diageo extended its leadership position.

However, net sales declined 8% in Ireland but Diageo gained share and the rate of decline in the beverage alcohol market slowed. Trading in southern European markets remained particularly difficult. The on trade continued to decline in Spain and increased excise taxes and reduced consumer spending led to a sharp slowdown in Greece in the fourth quarter.

The weaker trade conditions in Southern Europe and Ireland impacted overall marketing spend as campaigns were reduced in line with consumer trends. Marketing spend was allocated to proven campaigns on key brands such as Captain Morgan in Northern Europe and Smirnoff in Great Britain. A small reduction in gross margin but lower marketing spend led to the operating profit decline of 1%.

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