UK/IRELAND: C&C Group admits "challenging" Q1, but exports soar
Poor weather hampered C&C's cider sales in Q1
C&C Group has admitted to a "challenging" first quarter due to poor weather in the UK and Ireland causing "weak" cider numbers.
Total cider volumes in the UK fell 21.6% in the three months to the end of the May, the Magners and Gaymers producer said in a trading statment today (27 June). In the Republic of Ireland (ROI), total volumes were down 1.1% - cider fell 5.4%m, but beer was up 29.6%.
Tennents's volumes were up 47.6% in ROI and is now pouring in around 1,200 on-trade outlets, the company said. The launch of Caledonia Smooth has also been "well-received" in the on-trade.
In export markets, the picture is more postive for C&C. Total volumes were up 62.9% in the period, with net revenue up 47.4%. Volume numbers were not disclosed.
"In our key export markets cider continues to show strong growth," the company said. The addtion of the Hornsby's cider brand was "complementing steady organic growth," it added. C&C acquired Hornsby's from E&J Gallo Winery last November.
Stephen Glancey, C&C Group CEO, said: “Despite a challenging quarter and tough consumer backdrop, we are confident that our resilient business model and strong brand market combinations will deliver continued earnings growth for the full year and maintain our business momentum.”
Looking ahead to the full-year, the company said it expects full-year operating profit to be between EUR112m (US$139.9m) and EUR118m.
"The core cider business will see an increase in commercial support and brand activity over the next nine months and we anticipate a recovery in volume and revenue," C&C said.
The company will provide full details of its performance when it issues its half-year numbers in October.
To view the full update, click here.
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