Chelmsford/Norwich: Britvic reports strengthening sales growth during third quarter
- Credit: PA
Soft drinks group Britvic today reported third quarter revenues of £316.3million, an increase of 5.4% over the same period last year.
The increase, representing growth of 4.0% excluding currency exchange factors, took the company’s revenues for the nine months to July 25 to £955.5m, up 1.5% in total and 1.6% at constant exchange rates.
Britvic, which recently ruled out the renewal of plans for a merger with rival AG Barr, despite the deal receiving clearance from the Competition Commission, said revenue growth was achieved in all its markets except Ireland.
Revenues in Great Britain were 4.4% up in the third quarter overall, with growth of 8.0% in stills and 2.1% in carbonates.
The company, whose production operation includes plants in Chelmsford (earmarked for closure under cost-saving plans) and Norwich, said this reflected a continued focus on growing value over volume and an increased share of “impulse” purchases of still drinks.
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France and International revenues were also ahead in the third quarter, by 4.6% and 25.0% respectively, with Fruit Shoot having now been rolled out to 32 US states.
However, revenue in Ireland fell by 5.5%, with growth in own-brand revenue being more than offset by a decline in third party brands in the licensed wholesale sector.
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Britvic chief executive Simon Litherland said: “Whilst quarter three continued to be a challenging consumer environment, we maintained our focus on building brand value with a substantially stronger marketing programme, which included our annual Robinsons Wimbledon campaign and Pepsi’s sponsorship of Beyoncé.
“As a result we have successfully driven an increase in average realised price and grown revenue by 4%.
“These results, combined with strong sales in the early weeks of quarter four, reinforce our confidence that we will deliver EBIT (earnings before interest and taxation) for the full year at the upper end of our guidance range of £125million to £131m.”
In a trading update of its own today, Irn-Bru maker AG Barr said that it expected its sales for the six months to July 28 to be around £127.5m, up 4.9% on last year’s first half.