Chivas sales fall 11% but Glenlivet enjoys growth

Chivas Brothers, the Scotch whisky business of Pernod Ricard, said its full-year total organic sales were down 11% as a result of the global COVID-19 crisis “and in particular its severe impact on global travel retail.”

Chivas Brothers said its strategic international brands — The Glenlivet, Ballantine’s, Chivas and Royal Salute — saw a sales drop of 10%.

“… however, a more detailed evaluation of their performance tells a story of resilience and recovery,” said Chivas.

“Looking at its strategic international brands performance in domestic markets only, Chivas Brothers’ organic sales fell –3%, with its Scotch portfolio gaining share in nine of the top ten markets covered by Nielsen, with a particularly strong performance in North America +3%.

“The Glenlivet consolidated its leadership in the Single Malt category in the US, growing +16% (Nielsen value MAT) in spite of the combined challenges of the pandemic and US tariffs, thanks to successful new launches including The Glenlivet 14 Year Old and The Glenlivet Caribbean Reserve off the back of the new Original By Tradition campaign.

“Global growth for the brand stands at +2%, demonstrating its strong H1 performance and the speed of its recovery in H2, which includes +60% growth in China in addition to gains in Eastern Europe, the UK and Taiwan.”

Chivas Brothers said Ballantine’s had an “exceptionally strong” first half but closed the year down 8%.

Chivas Brothers CEO Jean-Christophe Coutures said: “Our business and brands have responded with agility and resilience in the face of unprecedented market conditions, in many instances outperforming the category.

“Strong performances in key regions such as North America and Eastern Europe, as well as in domestic markets with fewer social restrictions such as Taiwan and Korea, have helped offset the heavily-impacted Global Travel Retail channel.

“We remain confident in the strength of our portfolio and the Scotch category as a whole, especially in its ability to withstand and overcome external challenges.”

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Mark McSherry
Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.