FOOD & BEVERAGES: SAB Continues to Grow
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In an economic environment marked by generally weak consumer spending despite a drop in headline inflation, SAB’s revenue grew by 2% (6% on a constant currency basis) as it continued to benefit from price increases implemented in the prior year in both the beer and soft drinks businesses. This growth falls in line with the expectations of the company.
Lager volumes declined by 3%, impacted by reduced consumer spending. Mainstream volumes, down 2%, performed relatively better supported by strong growth in Castle Lager and Hansa Pilsener. Carling Black Label continued to be affected by its prevalence in the challenging Western Cape liquor market. Within local premium, Castle Lite returned to growth. Soft drinks volumes were down 2%, in line with the market. During the period, SAB grew its share of the sparkling soft drinks segment.
Input costs remained under pressure as medium term contractual arrangements with key brewing raw material suppliers limited the business' ability to benefit from the downturn in brewing commodity prices. Higher packaging materials and sugar prices also contributed to increased input costs in the first six months. Distribution costs declined in line with relatively lower crude oil prices, aided by distribution efficiencies.
In reviewing the past six months and looking ahead SAB is operating in a significantly different environment today than it was a few years ago.
Business News Sector Tags: Food|