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BUL: Heineken unit plans modernisation drive

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Heineken's Bulgarian brewing arm, Zagorka, plans to invest BGN15m (US$9.1m) this year to modernise its facilities and drive sales.

Zagorka general manager Jan Derck van Karnebeek said yesterday (8 February) that the brewer would invest to make its operations "even more efficient" following a year of rising profits.

"We expect to be able to increase our profit again this year and we will do it in the same way, we will invest in our brands and we will work even further to make our production even more efficient than it is now," van Karnebeek told the See News agency.

"We will invest this year in total BGN15m Bulgaria, most of that will be on the brewery site, but also we will invest in coolers because we strongly believe that this has great impact on the sales," van Karnebeek added.

Zagorka earnings rose by 15% last year but beer volumes fell 3% thanks to a duty hike on beer in Bulgaria.

Van Karnebeek said that Zagorka, which is the country's number two brewer behind InBev's Kamenitza, would be able to maintain its market share this year.

Heineken and Greece's Coca-Cola HBC both own a 50% stake in Zagorka.


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