Budejovicky Budvar, the maker of Czech beer brand Budweiser Budvar, announced yesterday it expects profit increases of between 3% and 4% in comparison to the 2000 financial year. 

In a press conference, company general director Jiri Bocek said profits should reach around CZK460-470m. Production meanwhile should be approximately 1.34mhl, close to the levels of last year.

Despite difficult trading conditions the company entered a number of new markets, including Croatia, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand and exports grew 8%.

Significantly, the company also launched in the US home of bitter rival for the Budweiser trademark Anheuser-Busch. However it did so under the brand name Czechvar, not Budvar or Budweiser.

While more than 60,000hl were exported to the UK, Germany remained the leading market for Budvar beer with 140,500hl in the first three-quarters of the year alone, an 8.3% increase over the same period last year.