Irish landscape improving for Britvic Ireland

Britvic’s Irish market is experiencing “a degree of stabilisation” and while Ireland remains "very challenged and volatile", according to Britvic’s Chief Executive Paul Moody, there are emerging signs of an improving landscape.

“Market conditions remain challenging in Ireland, but the business has performed in line with our expectations and we have successfully completed the restructuring programme,” he stated at the announcement of trading for the 28 weeks to 17th April, adding that Britvic Ireland’s business has delivered some key initiatives.

"Firstly, a material price increase in the second quarter; secondly, innovation launches and finally, we have completed the restructure of the organisation," said Paul Moody, "These initiatives position the business well to deliver profits for the full-year and beyond."

Britvic’s Irish on-trade volumes were down seven per cent to 106 million litres but the average realised price per litre rose by 3.9 per cent as the company pushed through price increases.

Britvic’s first price rise in Ireland for some years reflected increasing raw materials and input costs. The company also incurred restructuring costs of €8.5 million (£7.5m) arising from the rationalisation plan that oversaw 100 jobs going, reducing the total workforce to 630. Britvic Ireland Managing Director Andrew Richards said that the market remains tough but “one or two channels are stabilising”.

Britvic Ireland’s off-licence sales here, however, witnessed an 8.1 per cent volume decline.

Earlier this year, Britvic stressed that considerable headroom for development remained here before it went on to purchase the County Tyrone drinks wholesaler Quinn’s from Tennents NI.

The company continues to restructure the Irish business quite dramatically, taking costs out of it. It will take time to bear fruit but the second-half performance here should see more benefits arising from the cost-extraction process.

As for the parent company, Paul Moody pointed to the improving performance in the second Quarter for Britvic plc while acknowledging the 5.3 per cent revenue decline to £81.9 million in the six months to April 17th on a total revenue figure of £663.1 million, up 26.1 per cent.

cap: “Market conditions remain challenging in Ireland, but the business has performed in line with our expectations” – Britvic Chief Executive Paul Moody.

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