French beverage company Pernod Ricard sees sales slump 9 per cent as emerging markets slow

PARIS – French beverage company Pernod Ricard saw sales fall sharply over the past three months, with the biggest decline in Asia and other emerging markets.

The maker of Absolut vodka said Thursday that revenue in the July-to-September period was 2 billion euros ($2.8 billion), a decline of 9 per cent from the same period last year.

The company blamed the decline on unfavourable currency exchange rates and a difficult comparison to strong sales last year. But it has long been warning of an economic slowdown in emerging markets, especially China.

The company has so far successfully used those markets to offset slow sales in recession-hit Europe and brings in more revenue from Asia, the Middle East and Africa than any other region. Sales declined 14 per cent in those regions this quarter.