Brown-Forman Corp., Louisville, Ky., reported financial results for its second quarter and the first half of fiscal 2018, which ended Oct. 31, 2017. For the second quarter, it reported that net sales increased 10 percent to $914 million compared with the prior-year period. Reported operating income increased 19 percent in the quarter to $346 million, it reports.

For the first six months of the fiscal year, the company’s reported net sales increased 10 percent to $1.6 billion, compared with the prior-year period. Reported net sales growth benefited by 2 percentage points from changes in distributor inventories and 1 percentage point of foreign exchange. Reported operating income increased 17 percent in the quarter to $590 million, it reports.

In a statement, Paul Varga, chief executive officer of Brown-Forman, said: “Brown-Forman’s second quarter and first-half results were excellent on both a reported and underlying basis. Against a backdrop of improving economies in the emerging markets and continued momentum in our categories of focus, our underlying net sales have accelerated nicely due to strong performances from our Jack Daniel’s, Woodford Reserve, Old Forester and Herradura brand families, as well as timing-driven improvements in our used barrel sales. We believe that an ever-improving combination of investment, resource allocation, revenue management, innovation and geographic expansion are important contributors to our acceleration in fiscal 2018.”

The company’s sales growth was led by the Jack Daniel’s family, up 10 percent. Brown-Forman’s portfolio of super- and ultra-premium whiskey brands delivered 22 percent reported sales growth. Woodford Reserve grew reported net sales 23 percent, and Old Forester grew even faster, the company says.

Finlandia vodka grew reported net sales 18 percent. El Jimador and Herradura each grew reported net sales by 15 percent, respectively. New Mix’s underlying net sales growth increased at a high single-digit rate, it says. BI