007 and rugby to the rescue for Heineken

10 February, 2016

Heineken has reported “low single digit” decline in beer volumes in the UK during 2015.

The Netherlands-based international brewer said the UK market had been “impacted by continued promotional pressure and challenging market conditions”.

Off-trade volumes were described as strong but with price pressures making the going heavy.

Volumes of premium beers and ciders increased strongly, however, the company said in its financial statements, led by the Heineken brand.

Cider innovations were described as “successful and value-enhancing”.

David Forde, managing director of Heineken UK, said: “Our premium beer portfolio continues to grow double-digit led by our flagship Heineken brand on the back of successful Rugby World Cup and 007 activations.

“The year also saw a bumper apple harvest in Herefordshire and we extended our leadership in the cider category with the Strongbow cider brand back in growth, driven by Dark Fruit and our new Cloudy Apple.”

Overall, the Heineken group recorded net profit of just over €2 billion (£1.6 billion) for the year on a 3.5% growth in revenue at €20.5 billion (£16 billion).

Beer volume growth was driven by the Americas, Asia Pacific and Western Europe, with Desperadoes, Affligem and Sol the group’s fastest-growing brands internationally.




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Talking terroir

When Bordeaux was in fashion, it seemed almost logical that we should fetishise winemakers. Here were people responsible for brilliant acts of blending, across large estates and multiple grape varieties, including superstars such as cabernet sauvignon and merlot. These days, fashion has moved on and pinot noir is ascendant. As a result, the star of the winemaker has fallen and we find ourselves following a new star in the sky: terroir.

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