Gruppo Campari, the Italian parent of Wild Turkey bourbon, reported “solid organic performance” in sales through the third quarter. Sales topped $1.3 billion for the first nine months of 2016, up 3.1 percent over the same period in 2015, with organic growth of 5.4 percent, the company reported.
But pretax profits for the first nine months fell 26.3 percent to $145 million, driven entirely by costs related to the $755 million purchase of Grand Marnier.
Net sales for the quarter, from July 1 to Sept. 30, topped $482 million, up 12.8 percent from the same period in 2015. For the quarter, pretax profits were down 55.6 percent to $32 million.
The outlook for Campari remains unchanged despite volatility in emerging markets, CEO Bob Kunze-Concewitz said. “We remain confident to deliver a positive and profitable performance, driven by the high-margin global priorities, particularly the aperitifs, American whiskeys and Jamaican rums,” Kunze-Concewitz said.
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The United States is now Campari’s largest market, accounting for more than a quarter of total sales, the company said. Key drivers in the region included “the positive performance of Wild Turkey,” up 7.3 percent in sales, driven mainly by the core bourbon, Campari said. American Honey also continued to perform well, the company said.
Globally, Campari said Wild Turkey organic sales increased 6.6 percent year to date, with “very satisfactory results” in the United States, Japan and the United Kingdom. Australia saw Wild Turkey ready-to-drink products gain market share.
For the quarter, sales of the Wild Turkey portfolio, which includes American Honey, were up 13.8 percent. Growth was mainly due to Wild Turkey, Campari said, but American Honey also recovered from previous declines reported in the United States.
This year, Wild Turkey launched a redesign of Wild Turkey packaging in all markets, and in June, it launched Wild Turkey Decades, a new limited-edition of rare Wild Turkey bourbons aged 10 to 20 years, in Australia and Japan. Decades is expected to launch in the United States in 2017.
In September, the company also debuted the first commercial directed by and featuring new spokesman Matthew McConaughey.