High-profile sports sponsorships helped AG Barr post a 17.9% increase in like-for-like sales in the past three months, the soft drinks giant announced today.

The Irn-Bru and Rubicon owner said operating margins were in line with expectations for its first quarter of 2010. Sponsorship deals covering football, cricket and rugby league, matched by increased levels of television advertising activity, helped drive sales.

The company also said changes to its supply chain and planned investment in manufacturing would be delivered on cost and on time.

“This is a good start to the 2010-11 financial year and reflects the combined effects of strong underlying growth momentum in key brands and the weighting of our commercial activities towards the first half of the financial year,” the company said.

“The strong start combined with our future plans gives us confidence that we will meet our expectations despite the continued uncertain economic backdrop.”

Read more
AG Barr upbeat for year ahead (24 May 2010)
Irn-Bru pumps in £15m to make it big in south (17 April 2010)
Rubicon puts £5m into marketing and cricket sponsorship (3 April 2010)