FINLAND: Heineken's Hartwall to cut up to 75 jobs

By | 17 January 2013

Hartwall plans to cut up to 8% of its staff and outsource part of its sales work, the Heineken-owned brewer and soft drinks maker has said.

Discussions with the company's workforce are under way, with a maximum 75 jobs at risk, a Hartwall spokesperson told just-drinks today (17 January). About 900 people are employed at the Finnish firm.

The planned losses, which will take place in April, are part of a structural reorganisation that Hartwall says will allow it to better target resources in a competitive market.

“The operational environment in Finland is at the moment difficult for all alcohol companies,” Hartwall said. “Taking action now will enable us to continue to be the innovative, effective player in the market.”

If the sales job cuts go ahead, part of the work would in future be purchased from an outside service provider, Hartwall added.

Previous streamlining efforts by the company included the closure of its Tornio brewery in 2009.

Hartwall became part of Heineken in 2008 after the Dutch brewer joined forces with Carlsberg to buy and carve up UK brewer Scottish & Newcastle.

Expert analysis

Beer in Finland

Beer volume sales declined by -2% in volume terms in 2011, due to poor sales in the on-trade channel, but also due to weak off-trade demand. The development is a continuation of the sales pattern seen since 2007. The market is mature, which prevents sales from growing, and the two tax increases in January and October 2009 shifted consumption towards private imports in 2010 and 2011. Not even the fact that July 2010 was the hottest July ever recorded managed to boost sales that year.

Sectors: Beer & cider, HR – personnel

Companies: Heineken, Carlsberg

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