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Diageo full-year sales plunge as demand dries up

Empty bars around the world and poor trading conditions.

It's been a challenging time for drinks makers.

The world's largest spirits maker, Diageo has taken a 1.3 billion pound - or near $1.7 billion - writedown as it reported a bigger than expected decline in sales on Tuesday (Aug 4)

Demand for its whisky, vodka and gin fell in nearly all markets.

The Johnnie Walker whisky maker took a hit in multiple countries due to lockdowns and challenging business conditions.

The company reported an 8.4% drop in organic sales for the year which ended June 30th.

It's thought to be the company's worst annual sales performance in more than a decade.

Diageo shares were down 6.2% in morning trade and it was the biggest loser on the FTSE.

The stock is down nearly 10% this year

By region, organic sales in Asia fell the most, dropping 16% due to the impact of coronavirus-related closures of bars in India and Thailand.

While in China demand was hit by the absence of the Chinese New Year.

Its Latin America, Africa and Europe and Turkey markets also posted double-digit falls in sales.

North America was the only bright spot.

Sales rose 2%, reflecting strong demand for tequilas and ready-to-drink beverages in stores.