Earnings rise at beer giant during 2015

Business, Finance | Wed 10 Feb | Author – Business & Finance
heineken Richard Leonard

Heineken volume in the premium segment grew 3.5%, with positive volume performance across all regions.

Revenue was up 3.5% last year at Heineken, with operating profit also rising by 6.9%.

Net profit at the company was recorded at over €2bn, an increase of 16%.

Heineken continues to invest in key developing growth markets, and during the year announced plans to build new breweries in the Ivory Coast, East Timor, Mexico and Brazil and to expand capacity in Ethiopia. A new brewery opened in Myanmar in July 2015.

Brand growth was strong in Brazil, the UK, South Africa, and Mexico and there was positive growth in Vietnam, Spain and the US.

These results offset weaker volume in Nigeria, Cameroon, Greece and Indonesia.

Heineken benefitted from the continued association with the UEFA Champions League, its partnership with the James Bond franchise and its sponsorship of the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

In 2015 Desperados, Affligem and Sol Premium all saw double-digit growth.

Desperados, the tequila-flavoured beer, delivered particularly strong performance in France, Poland and Spain.

Affligem, the Belgian abbey beer brand, saw strong growth in France and the Netherlands.

Similar to the first half of the year, Brazil and CCU markets were the key volume growth drivers of Sol Premium, the Mexican beer.

Jean-François van Boxmeer, CEO, commented: “Our strong performance in 2015 reflects the successful execution of our strategy, as well as the relevance of our unique geographic diversity and our portfolio of premium brands, led by Heineken. In 2015, top and bottom line growth was supported by increased investment in our brands, sustained innovation, and cost efficiencies.”

He continued: “At the same time we have continued to invest for future growth, by entering or expanding our presence in markets including Myanmar, Ivory Coast, East Timor, Jamaica, Malaysia, Slovenia and South Africa. We are also particularly excited by our new partnership with Lagunitas, one of the leading craft brewers in the US.”

Heineken Ireland generated €512.6m last year.

“2015 saw Heineken Ireland record market share growth of 0.3% in the beer and cider category, performing ahead of the market and delivering another strong year for the company,” said Maggie Timoney, managing director, Heineken Ireland. “The launch of our new cider, Orchard Thieves, last May, was a big success. Orchard Thieves now commands an impressive 4.3% of total cider and outperformed the declining cider category.”

Photo: Richard Leonard