The Bulmers performance reflected category growth, a strong performance in packaged in the on-trade and an increased share in the off-trade, reports brand owners, the C&C Group. Furthermore a number of new trading initiatives were introduced to support key accounts and on-trade customers.
“The marketing focus is now on taking advantage of the category expansion and meeting the challenge from new entrants,” stated a spokesman for the company.
Key to growth in Magners is the increased investment behind the brand and to a lesser extent, the rationalisation of the cider category in the UK.
“You’ll recall the Magners ‘Hold True’ advertising campaign in Spring/Summer 2016 which drove the increased volumes,” he added.
In the UK Magners is expected to demonstrate 11% growth, picking up share in a cider category that’s shown an overall decline of 0.5%.
The predictions were contained in a pre-close trading update from the C&C Group which expects to realise Group Operating Profit in the region of €94-€96 million, down on the €103.2 million figure for 2016. The major factor in this decline was the devaluation of Sterling, states the company.
Cider in Ireland continued to grow its share of the Long Alcohol Drinks market as a generation of younger drinkers entered the category. Nevertheless, Bulmers brand growth slowed slightly in the second half of the year and while the brand ceded share of cider in draught, the volume loss was offset by growth in pint bottle and small pack, states the company.
Overall, export volumes are likely to be up in the low and single digits for the full year.
Preliminary results for FY17 will be announced on 17th May.