March 29, 2017 / 7:53 AM / 9 months ago

Drinks group Pernod says raised prices in Britain in March due to Brexit

PARIS, March 29 (Reuters) - Pernod Ricard raised the prices of its spirits in Britain in March to protect margins against a slide in the pound stemming from the country’s vote to leave the European Union, according to company slides released ahead of an analyst call.

Pernod, the world’s second-biggest spirits group behind Britain’s Diageo, did not detail the scope of the price hikes. The company is hosting a call on its European, Middle Eastern, Africa and Latin American businesses later in the day.

“Brexit is leading to a strong pound depreciation, with inflation expected higher as a reaction. In that context, Pernod Ricard increased prices in March,” the slides said.

Pernod had previously reported that sales in Britain rose 7 percent in the first half of its 2016-2017 fiscal year, as a 9 percent rise in international spirits sales and a 6 percent rise in wines more than offset a decline in champagne sales.

British Prime Minister Theresa May will file formal Brexit divorce papers on Wednesday. (Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)

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