October 18, 2016 / 5:40 AM / in a year

Remy Cointreau Q2 sales accelerate with China, U.S

PARIS, Oct 18 (Reuters) - French spirits group Remy Cointreau said on Tuesday that sales growth accelerated in the second quarter due to improving cognac sales in China and robust demand for its premium cognac in the United States, its largest market.

Remy Cointreau, which is accelerating a drive to sell higher-priced spirits to boost profit margins, kept its goal to increase current operating profit on a comparable basis in the full financial year that ends on March 31.

The maker of Remy Martin cognac and Cointreau liquor said that sales reached 294.8 million euros ($330.21 million) in the second quarter to September 30, for an organic growth of 7.4 percent, against a flat performance in the first quarter.

Sales of cognac, which contribute 59 percent of group revenue, rose 9.3 percent year-on-year in second quarter, an acceleration from a 0.5 percent decline in the previous quarter.

Like other spirits makers, including larger rivals Diageo and Pernod Ricard, Remy Cointreau was hit by falling sales of cognac and other luxury goods in China following a government crackdown on corruption and conspicuous consumption since 2014.

$1 = 0.8928 euros Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Mathieu Rosemain

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