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: Pernod Ricard warns of the second conflict of the COVID wave

Alexandre Ricard, grandson of Paul Ricard and head of the French spirits and wine company Pernod-Ricard, poses during a photo session at his home in Paris on March 13, 2018.

AFP via Getty Images

French spirits maker Pernod Ricard's sales rebounded faster than expected in the quarter that ended in September. However, the company warned that the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe would "severely affect" the last three months of the year.

Pernod
RI,
+ 2.87%,
the second largest beverage and spirits group in the world behind Diageo
DGE,
+ 0.11%,
Sales in the first quarter of the fiscal year from July to September were "encouraging". Organic sales decreased by 6% compared to the same period last year. Analysts polled by Reuters reported a 13% drop in sales.

The maker of Beefeater Gin, Absolut Vodka and Chivas Whiskey said sales for the quarter ended June this year were down 36% compared to the same period in 2019.

CEO Alexandre Ricard told Reuters that sales in the next three months will be "severely affected" by the second wave of the coronavirus in Europe. Pubs and restaurants are closed throughout the region, curfews are ordered in France and the ban is complete in Ireland.

However, the group announced in a press release that it expects revenue to grow again in the first half of 2021.

Pernod's shares rose 3% in midday trading in Paris.

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