En primeur success helps Berry Bros revenue reach six-year high

12 July, 2017

London fine wine retailer Berry Bros & Rudd has recorded a six-year revenue high, buoyed by strong sales of en primeur and own-label wines.

The company said en primeur sales had been the third highest in its history reflecting the quality and size of harvests in Bordeaux and Burgundy.

Sales of own-label wines were up 22% and spirits sales increased by 12%, driven by success in its own Scotch whisky bottlings and casks.

Revenue from hospitality set a new record for the family-owned firm with 25,000 people attending over 1,000 events at its premises in London’s West End.

Total revenue was up 17% to £170.5 million in the year to March, its highest level since 2011.

Operating profit rose from £2.3 million to £6.3 million. Two years ago, the company posted a loss of £2.8 million.

Chief executive Dan Jago said: “Today’s results are an important milestone. Over the past 18 months, we have undergone a process of consolidation across all our business areas in order to simplify the organisation, its routes-to-market and customer channels.

“This has had the desired effect of stabilising the existing business and delivering strong sales growth.”

Chairman Simon Berry added: “This is a terrific set of results. We have succeeded in refocusing the company’s core.”

BBR recently opened a big new wine shop alongside its historic London offices and events space.

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Lifting the spirits

I were to sum up alcohol sales over Christmas 2017 in one word, it would be “gin”. At Nielsen, we define the Christmas period as the 12 weeks to December 30 and in that time gin sales were £199.4 million, which means they increased by £55.4 million compared with Christmas 2016. There’s no sign the bubble is about to burst either. Growth at Christmas 2016 was £22.4 million, so gin has increased its value growth nearly two-and-a-half times in a year. The spirit added more value to
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