This was driven by the continued Lockdowns with Ireland experiencing one of the longest hospitality sector lockdowns in the world according to the C&C Group’s annual report which pointed to “a shift in consumption dynamics with off-trade volumes up 21.2% versus Full Year 2020.
“While this provided a welcome revenue stream, the lower margin and pack mix pressures were not sufficient to offset the impact of the on-trade closures. As a result operating profit has reduced by €45.1 million to a loss of €4.9 million.”
The Irish operation suffered a decline in volume of 11.2% in the year while volumes of Bulmers were down 18.0% here although off-trade sales helped bolster against further losses.
“Bulmers off-trade volume and value share of Irish cider of 50.5% and 50.8% respectively as at February 2021 represents growth of 3.7% and 4.3% which, in part, was supported by the exceptionally good weather during Spring and Summer 2020,” according to the company.
Indeed Bulmers off-trade volumes were up 37.7% on the previous year, with the brand taking both volume and value share in the LAD off-trade market. The C&C Group also reported that, “Bibendum Ireland, which is the largest independent wine business in Ireland, performed strongly, capitalising on a change in consumption dynamics, with total volumes up 7.9% in FY2021 versus 878k cases sold in FY2020″.
C&C Group’s total revenue for the year was €736.9 million, down 56.1% on the previous year’s €1.7 billion while pre-tax losses were €85.2 million compared to a pre-tax profit of €104.1 million the previous year.
“FY2021 has presented an extraordinary set of circumstances which have challenged our business and our industry at every level,” commented David Forde, C&C Group Chief Executive, “With approximately 80% of C&C’s pre-Covid-19 net revenue derived from the hospitality sector, the pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on the Group.”
The group’s off-trade saw a 14.2% growth for the year.