Jamaica Rum sales up, but JWray sales dip

WRAy & Nephew Ltd annual sales, led by its flagship Appleton rum, totalled roughly ¤101 million euros (J$12.5 b) in 2014 or slightly less than a year earlier, just released financials from its parent Campari Group indicate.

Non-core business pulled down local sales but the Jamaican rum portfolio posted better results, according to financials of the Italian-owned group.

“Sales in Jamaica declined organically by 4.4 per cent in 2014, driven by the soft performance of the non-core business, partially offset by the positive results of the Jamaican rum portfolio and Campari,” according to statements on the results.

Factors which affected the local performance included currency movements and the change in the overall “perimeter” size of the business relating to the “termination” of distribution agreements of select consumer products in Jamaica.

Local sales amounted to 6.5 per cent of total Campari group revenue at ¤ 1.56 billion euros. Campari made net profit of ¤128.9 million euros or 13.9 per cent lower than a year earlier due to one-off costs.

“The Jamaican rum portfolio, including Appleton, Wray&Nephew White Overproof and Coruba, showed overall very good results with an organic growth of 4.4 per cent, improving progressively throughout the year, mainly driven by the US,” stated Campari on the results. “Canada and Jamaica showed an improving trend, starting to benefit from new marketing strategies. The new markets for the brand portfolio, Italy, Germany, Japan, Austria, France and Chile showed an encouraging momentum.”

In the financial year, the group continued to shed non-core business in Jamaica as part of its effort to focus on rum and spirit activity. These included the termination of its distribution arrangement for Kimberly-Clark products, which included household names Kleenex, Scott and Huggies. It also sold a property by the wharf in Kingston for some 2.4 million euros.

Campari acquired Lascelles in December 2012 for some US$409 million from Trinidad-based majority shareholder, CL Financial, and local shareholders. Campari then merged 22 local companies into the long-standing Wray & Nephew in order to strengthen the group’s route to market in Jamaica.


Google CFO Patrick Pichette to Retire


Google Inc (GOOGLE) said on Tuesday that Chief Financial Officer Patrick Pichette has announced his intention to retire, marking the latest change to the Internet company’s upper ranks.

Google expects to find a replacement for Pichette within six months, the company said in a regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The effective date of Pichette’s retirement has not been determined but Google said Pichette intends to assist in the search for a new CFO.

The world’s No. 1 Internet search company has gone through a string of changes to the senior management. Google has a market valuation of roughly $380 billion and analysts expect the company to generate $76 billion in revenue this year.

Shares of Google, which finished Tuesday’s regular trading session down 2.4 percent at $555.01, were down 15 cents in after-hours trading.

A former telecom industry executive, Pichette joined Google in 2008.

Last year, Google Chief Business Officer Nikesh Arora departed unexpectedly to become Vice Chairman of Japan’s SoftBank Corp and was replaced by longtime Google executive Omid Kordestani. Vic Gundotra, the head of Google’s social networking services, left in April 2014.

(Reporting by Subrat Patnaik in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirti Pandey and David Gregorio)

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