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Campari’s U.S. Sales Rise 4.3%, Led By Espolòn And Aperol

November 6, 2018

Campari posted a 4.3% organic increase in its U.S. sales in the nine months through September, representing the first three quarters of the company’s fiscal year. Growth in the U.S.—Campari’s largest market, accounting for 27% of its total sales—was driven by the surging Espolòn Tequila brand, as well as the Aperol and Campari liqueurs and the Wild Turkey family of whiskies.

On a global basis, Campari Group’s sales were up 6.6% to €1.2 billion ($1.37b) through September on an organic basis, while EBIT rose by 8.7% to €259 million ($296m). However, sales were down 2.5% and EBIT increased only 0.7% on a reported basis, owing to exchange rate effects.

The U.S. continues to grow in importance for the Aperol and Campari brands, and both rose by double-digits over the nine-month period. The U.S. is now the third-largest global market for Aperol in value terms, and the second-largest for Campari. Aperol has more than doubled in size in the U.S. over the past two years, and is now above 100,000 cases. Campari has likewise been on a steady upward trajectory, and is above 120,000 cases. Another key liqueur brand, Grand Marnier, eked out a slightly positive performance for the year-to-date with low single-digit depletions growth. The luxury label sells above 500,000 cases in the U.S. annually.

Espolòn also continues to be a strong performer for Campari in the U.S., with net sales up 34% so far this fiscal year. The brand, which retails in the $25 range, ended last year at just below 300,000 cases. Espolòn is led by its Blanco expression, with New York, Texas, and California among its key markets.

Meanwhile, Campari’s American whiskey stable, led by Wild Turkey, is likewise on the rise. The company says the franchise is seeing a “very positive sales mix driven by premium expressions such as Russell’s Reserve and Longbranch,” the new 8-year-old Bourbon rolled out in collaboration with actor Matthew McConaughey that sells at $40 a bottle.

Growth in Tequila, liqueurs, and whiskey helped offset the continuing struggles of Skyy vodka in the U.S. Globally Skyy was down 8%, with the company blaming “the persistent competitive environment within the category as well as the weakness of the flavored segment” in the U.S. for the decline. Skyy was at 2.6 million cases in the U.S. last year, according to Impact Databank.—Daniel Marsteller

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