Boston Beer Co reports strong demand for its beers

Boston Beer Co reports strong demand for its beers

Boston Beer Co has significantly raised its profits forecast for 2010 due to stronger-then-expected demand for its beers in the year so far.

Boston Beer said yesterday (14 December) that it anticipates full-year earnings per share to be between US$3.3 and $3.6 for the 12 months of 2010. Back in May, the Samuel Adams brewer said that earnings per share would not be above $2.95 for the year.

Its strong upgrade reflects ongoing demand for the company's beers, which have profited from craft beer's popularity in the US at the expense of mainstream brands.

"This increase is primarily due to increased shipment volumes and the timing of certain selling, general and administrative expenses," the company said. "Shipments and orders in-hand now suggest that core shipments year-to-date through December 2010 will be up approximately 12% compared to the same period in 2009."

Boston Beer also upgraded its forecast for full-year depletions - sales from distributors to retailers - to a rise of between 11% and 13%. Only last month, it upgraded its target for full-year depletions growth from 9% to 11%.

The brewer is planning to take a hit on earnings in 2011 in order to implement its Freshest Beer Program, which aims to get beer through distributors' warehouses and into consumers' fridges more quickly.