• Half-year EBITDA slips by 1.8% to EUR75.9m (US$98.9m)
  • Sales in six months to end of August also down, by 2% to EUR263.4m
  • Operating profits perform similarly, dropping by 2.7% to EUR65.6m
  • Poor weather, weak consumption in UK and Ireland blamed for red numbers
C&C Group has blamed the weatherman for its tough H1

C&C Group has blamed the weatherman for its tough H1

C&C Group has posted sliding first half numbers after the UK summer failed to materialise.

EBITDA in the six months to the end of August fell by 1.8% to EUR75.9m (US$98.9m), the group said earlier today (23 October). Sales slipped by 2% in the same period to EUR263.4m, as operating profits also fell, by 2.7% to EUR65.6m. 

C&C branded the performance "resilient", but pointed to a challenging environment in its key UK and Ireland markets. This was caused by poor summer weather and "weak" cider consumption in both regions. Total volumes of branded products were down by 8.2% in the six-month period. It comes after a similarly challenging Q1.

Stephen Glancey, C&C's CEO, acknowledged that its core cider brands, Magners and Bulmers had seen volume falls in the first-half, but pointed to other better-performing parts of the business. "The Tennent's (beer) brand continues to outperform, with net revenue and operating profit growing ahead of the Scottish beer market," he said.  

He also highlighted the group's growing overseas business. "Our international business, including acquisitions, continues to grow at an exciting pace, with volumes increasing by over 50%," Glancey said. 

Looking ahead, C&C said its full-year operating profits guidance is now at the "lower end" of its previously-stated range of EUR112m to EUR118m. 

The group also announced today that it has "conditionally" agreed to acquire the Vermont Hard Cider Company for US$305m.

It has also appointed MD of its international division, Joris Brams, to the group's board of directors with immediate effect. 

Shares in C&C Group are currently up 8% at EUR4.08. 

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