Diageo on target for profit growth

07 May, 2009

Diageo says it is on course to achieve full-year growth in profits of between 4% and 6%.

The Smirnoff and Johnnie Walker drinks group said organic net sales were flat in the nine months to March 31, and declined 7% in the last quarter driven by planned stock reductions in the US market.

Overall net sales grew by 16% in the nine-month period to March, with the first three months of 2009 11% ahead of last year.

Growth was largely fuelled by the impact of exchange rate movements.

Chief executive Paul Walsh said: “As we anticipated, trading in markets around the world has weakened in the second half of the fiscal year.

“However, through our actions, including our focus on marketing efficiency and the implementation of our restructuring programme, we are taking the steps necessary to put ourselves in a position to emerge from the downturn as an even stronger business.”

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