ABInbev reports volume growth driven by strong sales of low/ no alcohol beer

ABInbev has reported volume growth and market share gains in the UK for the first quarter of 2019, driven by strong double-digit sales of both Budweiser and Bud Light.

The company also said sales of no and low-alcohol beer are growing at nearly twice the rate of higher-strength beer in the UK.

Paula Lindenberg, president, Budweiser Brewing Group UK & I, said: “This indicates that our efforts to foster smart drinking are paying off. Our latest addition to our no-and-low alcohol beers, Michelob Ultra, has had a great start to the year as we undertook nationwide sampling and partnered with Virgin Sport, capturing the growing wellness trend and creating a wholly new category for beer. Following a successful off-trade launch, we are now introducing the brand in 73 calorie, 33cl bottles in the on-trade. Britons can balance working out with going out.”

Globally, the company recorded volume growth of 1.3% for the period and a revenue growth of 5.9%.  The combined revenues of its three global brands (Budweiser, Stella Artois and Corona) grew by 8.5% globally and by 14% outside of their respective home markets.

ABInbev said the ongoing success of its premiumisation strategy was supporting growth and it added that it continued to make good progress towards its ambitious 2025 sustainability goals, reducing carbon emissions across its value chain by more than 4.5% in the last year.

Lindenberg said: “Our UK business has had a strong start to the year, as well continue to deliver volume growth and market share gains, with both Budweiser and Bud Light growing double digits. We have unveiled our new name Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I, moved to our new London offices and announcd renewed ambitions, which include creating a nation of smart drinkers and championing Britain’s iconic beer culture.

“Looking ahead we are preparing for an epic summer of sport. Budweiser is getting behind the England Women’s football team in their FIFA Women’s World Cup 2019 bid, while Bud Light continues to be the Official Beer of the Senior England Men’s Football team. Stella Artois is also bringing the perfect serve to this year’s Wimbledon, as well as continuing its partnerships with Ascot and The Open.

“This summer is a huge time for beer sales and we will be focused on growing the category, supporting our customers and delighting consumers with some of the nation’s most loved beer and cider brands.”

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