Brown-Forman, the parent company of Jack Daniel's, has seen its reported net sales rise by 2% in the first half half of fiscal 2019, ended October 31, 2018.
For the first six months of the fiscal year, the company’s reported net sales increased to $1.68 billion.
The company said year-to-date reported operating income was flat at $596 million (+4% on an underlying basis) and diluted earnings per share of $0.93 increased 8%.
“Tariff-related buy-ins helped power first quarter results, while the anticipated giveback materialised in the second quarter, resulting in 5% underlying net sales growth during the first half,” commented Paul Varga, the company’s chief executive.
“This growth demonstrates the consistency of our revenue delivery, especially against strong, 7% underlying net sales growth during the same period last year. Given easier back half comparisons and our momentum, we are on track for another year of 6-7% underlying net sales growth.”
Jack Daniel's posted 3% underlying net sales growth during the period, with the Jack Daniel's family of brands seeing sales grow by 5% (+2% on a reported basis).
The company’s ‘super-premium’ American whiskey brands, meanwhile, grew underlying net sales 19% (+12% reported), including 25% underlying net sales growth from Woodford Reserve (+24% reported).
“Our premium portfolio of American whiskey brands, led by Jack Daniel’s and bolstered by Woodford Reserve, continued to deliver balanced geographic growth,” said chief operating officer Lawson Whiting.
“While we are largely absorbing the tariff costs during fiscal 2019, we are confident in the long-term growth potential for our brands as we continue to build awareness with new consumers and increase our global distribution.”
Fiscal Year 2019 Outlook
Looking ahead, the American-owned spirits and winer maker noted that the global economy has continued to improve over the last year.
However, the competitive landscape in the developed world remains intense, and recently enacted retaliatory tariffs on American whiskey have created additional uncertainty around the company’s near-term outlook, making it difficult to accurately predict future results.
The company currently anticipates underlying net sales growth of 6% to 7% next year.
© 2018 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Donna Ahern. Click subscribe to sign up for the Checkout print edition.