By James Atkinson

ASX-listed winery Australian Vintage increased its net profit to $7.1 million for the full year to June 30, while its Tempus Two brand this week kicked off its renewed sponsorship of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia.

The net profit increase of eight per cent on last year was attributable to $3.6 million of 'significant items' incurred by the business in 2010/11.

It masked a decline in EBIT of $5.9 million, which AV said was due mainly to below average crops from estate vineyards "resulting in a $4.1 million reduction in the fair value of grapes picked".

Australian Vintage chief executive Neil McGuigan said the company continues to face challenges including the strong Australian dollar, the economic uncertainty in its major markets and wine oversupply conditions.

But he said the company had made good progress in reducing its debt and managing its working capital, and the quality from this year's vintage is excellent.

"Our winemakers say 2012 has potential to be a stand-out vintage like 2004," McGuigan said.

Meanwhile, Australian Vintage's Tempus Two label continued its association with fashion this week at the consumer focussed Mercedes-Benz Fashion Festival Sydney. [continues below]

Fashion designer Leona Edmiston signing the 12 litre Tempus Two Balthazar bottle

The event marks the beginning of a new two and a half year partnership with Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia, under which Tempus Two will provide premium sparkling, white and red wine from its Copper and Varietal series' to local and international fashion delegates and consumers throughout the two annual events.

"With synonymous values of style, elegance, innovation and fascination, the continued collaboration with Tempus Two and fashion is the ideal partnership," said Kate Kriven from Tempus Two.

"Not only is it the perfect market to showcase our wines, but it allows us to support young up and coming Australian designers and the Australian fashion industry as a whole," she said.

"Like fashion, Tempus Two is for those who appreciate style and substance and our wines help to stand out from the crowd with unique shaped bottles, labels that shine and superior wine quality."

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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