Thursday, August 04, 2011

After Record Second Quarter, Beam Says It Will Step Up Brand Investment

(by Shanken News Daily) Beam Global Spirits & Wine enjoyed record sales of $703 million, up 11%, in the three months through June, and says it intends to continue aggressively upping its spend behind key brands in the second half of 2011. For the first half of the year, Beam’s net sales increased by 14% to $1.38 billion, while operating income before charges rose 12% to $299 million.
“Our investments in innovation and brand building are paying off, and we’re further stepping up our brand investment as a result,” said Bruce Carbonari, chairman and CEO of Beam parent Fortune Brands. “Jim Beam accelerated its momentum in the quarter, Maker’s Mark continued its double-digit growth, and Skinnygirl (acquired in March) has become the fastest-growing spirits brand in America.” Carbonari said profits are expected to lag behind sales growth in the third quarter as Beam’s promotional spend continues to rise by double-digits, before “normalizing to a relatively constant run rate as a percentage of sales” in the fourth quarter.

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