Diageo Great Britain posts 2% sales growth

Diageo Great Britain has announced a net sales growth of 2% over the past year, with Baileys and reserve brands such as Talisker and Ciroc leading the charge.

The growth figures represent on- and off-trade sales (Nielsen and CGA, year to June 2014) and show Baileys sales up 8%, driven by new launch Baileys Chocolate Luxe.

The firm’s biggest brand, Smirnoff, struggled and saw a net sales decline, but Johnnie Walker and Captain Morgan both grew.

Diageo Great Britain’s reserve portfolio has grown by 29%, while its premix ranges such as cans of Gordon’s and tonic and Pimm’s and lemonade saw “double-digit growth”.

Country director Andrew Cowan said: “We continued our return to growth with net sales growing by 2% as we continued to successfully execute our strategy of driving innovation, growing the reserve portfolio, and focusing on profitable growth for our premium core business.  Diageo GB saw share growth in both the total beverage alcohol market and the spirits market.”

Meanwhile Facebook’s Nicola Mendelsohn has joined Diageo’s board as a non-executive director, meaning almost half its board are now female.

Diageo chairman Dr Franz Humer said Mendelsohn’s “senior experience at the forefront of digital marketing and communications will be of great benefit to Diageo and its brands” as the company ramps up innovation in all areas of the business.

Cowan said: “In total, nearly 70% of all spirits innovations in Great Britain from the last 12 months  have come from Diageo Great Britain [Nielsen off trade, year to March 2014].”

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