Marie Brizard registers 3.4% sales drop in Q2

French group Marie Brizard Wine & Spirits (MBWS) has reported a 3.4% net sales loss in the second quarter of 2019, at the same time as announcing new distributors in Spain and Scandinavia.

Net sales fell to €104 million (US$115.7m) during Q2. In France, net sales for the period were down 15.3% to €24m (US$26.7m). The firm previously said it was focussing on “prioritising profitability” in the market. Last month, MBWS proposed a plan to “redeploy” its sales force in France, which would result in the loss of 51 jobs.

In the first half of 2019, net sales in the Western Europe, Middle East and Africa cluster was reported at €53.6m (US$59.6m), down 8.7%.

In Q2, net sales in the Central and Eastern European (CEE) region increased 37.2% to €17m (US$18.9m). This was boosted by the firm’s Polish business where net sales “more than doubled” driven by the “gradual ramping up” of distribution deals signed in 2018, along with the support of a commercial policy “which aims to diversify the customer base”.

Net sales in the first half of 2019 in the CEE cluster increased 41.6% to €29.5m (US$32.8m).

In the Americas, net sales for Q2 were €4m (US$4.4m), down by 18.4%. In the US, Sobieski sales were down as the result of a “polarised” vodka market and “price pressure”.

For the 2019 first half, net sales in the Americas cluster increased by 7.2% to €8.1m (US$9m).

In the Asia Pacific region, net sales for Q2 fell by 40% to €0.6m. Net sales were €1m in the first half of 2019.

‘Concrete progress’

MBWS also announced its progress on the execution of its strategic plan. The firm said it had “made concrete progress in finding commercial synergies with its majority shareholder, COFEPP”.

MBWS will assign the distribution of its products in Spain to Bardinet Spain and MBWS Scandinavia will handle the distribution of its portfolio in Scandinavia.

The group said these decisions are “based on an analysis of critical mass, fixed cost absorption and therefore profitability”.

Andrew Highcock, CEO of MBWS, said: “In the first half of the year, net sales of the branded business generated sound growth.

“In accordance with a commercial policy focused on value, total net sales are down in France in favour of increasing profitability of sales.

“In Poland, the distribution agreements signed in 2018 continued to gain momentum.

“We will continue to execute our strategy and adapt our organisation to achieve profitable growth in the medium-term.”

Looking ahead, MBWS aims to make EBITDA in the range of €13m to €19m (US$14.4m-US$21.1m) by 2022.

Business, Entrepreneur, Estate, Family, Next Generation, Startup, Succession, Wealth