Heineken is set to release its first-half results on Wednesday (22 August). Below, we take a look at the highs and lows for the company in the six months to the end of June.

  • It has been a crowded 2012 for Heineken already. Who could have guessed at the start of the year the twists and turns that lay ahead for its partnership with Fraser & Neave (F&N), over its JV Asia Pacific Breweries? But perhaps the signs were there in January when F&N warned of a challenging year ahead.
  • Heineken had its challenges, too. In February, CFO Rene Hooft Graafland warned that the company will close more breweries and maltings. Graafland said most closures will be in Europe, which has already seen the shuttering of 46 breweries and maltings in the past decade.
  • Heineken’s boardroom was celebrating in April when Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s handed the brewer “long-term” investment grade ratings.
  • But a few days later it was selling, not buying, that was focusing minds as Heineken relinquished its 9.3% stake in Cerveceria Nacional Dominicana to Anheuser-Busch InBev. Heineken said it expects to realise a bottom-line gain of about EUR130m (US$169.6m) from the sale of the leading Dominican Republic brewer.
  • Heineken started the year returning to the fold its tequila beer Desperados in the UK. In June, the company told just-drinks it is gearing the brand up for a major push. Chances are investors will hear more about it in Wednesday’s results.
  • It was a big six months of sport for all the major brewers. Heineken spent the half getting ready for the London Olympics, of which it was a major sponsor. But was the money it spent worth it?