Allied Domecq's major move into the wine business and belated entry into the premium packaged spirits market in the US took the gloss off a set of reasonable interim results this week. City analysts welcomed news that the pricing difficulties the global spirits company had in the US have been resolved and said the results were a reasonable performance in the circumstances. But Nigel Popham at City analyst Teather Greenwood said: "There is uncertainty about the company's growing interest in the wine business and its late move into the US pps sector could be a no win game. This is not a bad performance given their portfolio but they have spent a lot of money on acquisitions and they need to get some returns from them." Allied Domecq reported a 6% increase in profits to £251m on turnover up 17% to £1.7bn for the six months to the end of February. Chief executive Philip Bowman said: "We have some short-term challenges. These include lower volume performances than planned from some of our core brands, particularly in the US." {{NEWS }}

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