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LVMH announces massive wine revenue slump

Luxury brand giant Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessey has announced massive wine and spirit losses in the first half of 2009.

The group, whose portfolio includes Moet & Chandon, Dom Perignon, Krug, Ruinart, and Veuve Clicquot (Champagne), Domaine Chandon (California), Cloudy Bay (New Zealand) and Chateau d’Yquem (Bordeaux), said that revenue had fallen by 17%, in a report released yesterday.

Sales at Moët Hennessy fell to €1.08bn (US$1.5bn) for the six months to the end of June 2009, compared to €1.29bn for the same period last year.

Overall, the luxury group posted first half profit losses of 23% compared with 2008.

Wines and spirits, and the group’s watches and jewellery divisions, were singled out as the chief reasons for the group’s poor performance. LVMH said the global downturn in spending had affected both operations.

It claimed, however, that business in the drinks sector had improved in the last three months.

Shares in the group fell sharply yesterday after the report, due to be announced on Wednesday, was leaked to the press.

NOTE The first paragraph of this story is a correction of the original version, which erroneously stated that LVMH had ‘announced wine and spirit losses of €1bn’.

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Written by Oliver Styles

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