• H1 beverage sales up 9.6% to JPY639.7bn (US$6.5bn)
  • Beverage operating profits climb 8.7% to JPY45.9bn
  • Group profits down 40% to JPY15.4bn
Soft drinks profits bounced back in H1

Soft drinks profits bounced back in H1

Asahi Group has posted a rise in first-half beverage profits as a strong soft drinks performance propped up flat alcohol sales.

Net beverage sales increased by 9.6% to JPY639.7bn (US$6.5bn) in the six months to the end of June, the Tokyo-based brewer, soft drinks maker and food group said today (1 August). Beverage operating profits also rose, by 8.7% to JPY45.9bn over the same period, Asahi said.

Alcohol sales and profits stayed mainly flat over the half year, but soft drinks posted a 30% jump in sales and a 205% jump in operating profits. Soft drinks account for around one-third of Asahi's beverage sales, but just one-tenth of operating profits.

It was a marked change to Asahi's full-year results, when soft drink sales increased by 13.8% but profits were down by 28%.

Overall net sales for Asahi Group rose by 10% to JPY780.7bn while net profits fell by 40% to JPY15.4bn. Operating profits were up by 12.6% to JPY36.9bn. Most of the profits drop was because of an JPY8bn gain on change in equity in H1 last year.

Asahi's share priced ended today's trading up 1% at JPY2,523.

In June, Asahi said it had teamed up with an Indonesian snacks maker to buy Indonesia's PepsiCo bottler for US$30m.

To read the company's official statement, click here.