Heineken has recorded first-quarter net profit of €299 million, in part thanks to volume increases across all regions.
Beer volume was up 4.3% organically, driven by strong single-digit volume increases in Heineken’s Asia-Pacific and Africa, the Middle East & Eastern Europe reporting segments. Organic growth in total volumes in Asia-Pacific was 8.2%, while in Africa, the Middle East & Eastern Europe it was 7.8%.
Heineken brand volume was 8.3% higher following double-digit growth in Africa, the Middle East & Eastern Europe, as well as the Americas. The Dutch brewer said that markets including Brazil, South Africa, Russia, China, the UK, Nigeria, Mexico, Romania and Germany were driving growth in trademark Heineken.
Jean-François van Boxmeer, chairman and CEO of Heineken, said: “We had a positive start to the year with volume growth across all regions despite the later timing of Easter, underlining our continued focus on growth and the breadth of our geographic footprint.
“Our outlook for 2019 remains unchanged: we anticipate our operating profit (BEIA) to grow by mid-single digits on an organic basis.”
This quarter, Heineken has already spent $100 million to build its first brewery in Mozambique and undertaken a US expansion for Newcastle Brown Ale as part of its Lagunitas Brewing business, which it acquired in 2017.
For its full-year 2018 results, Heineken recorded a 3.9% increase in net revenue and 2.9% growth in operating profit, boosted by core brands like Heineken following the release of the alcohol-free Heineken 0.0.
For this quarter, the company saw beer volume grow organically by 7.8% across Africa, the Middle East & Eastern Europe. There was also double-digit volume growth for markets including Russia and South Africa.
In the Americas, where it introduced Heineken 0.0, beer volume grew organically by 3.2%. In Mexico, volume was slightly down – impacted by the later timing of Easter and lower promotional activity – but the premium portfolio grew by double digits, led by Heineken. In Brazil, beer volume grew by double digits again, driven by both the premium portfolio and mainstream brands such as Amstel and Devassa.
In Asia-Pacific, volume was up organically by 8.2%, boosted by double-digit growth in Cambodia and high-single-digit growth in Vietnam. This was supported by brands such as Tiger, Larue, and Anchor. It was complimented by robust performance in larger markets, with low-single-digit growth in Muslim-majority Indonesia being driven primarily by low- and no-alcohol products; plus mid-single-digit growth in China spurred on by new Heineken 0.0.
Finally, in Europe, beer volume grew organically by 1.6% following unseasonably good weather and withstanding the early arrival of Easter. In the UK, total consolidated volume was up low-single digits, helped by some inventory build-up anticipating Brexit and a re-listing at a large retailer.
In France, beer volume was up mid-single digits, with double-digit growth of Desperados and Affligem. It was a similar story in Italy, where volume grew by mid-single digits thanks to strong double-digit growth of Ichnusa.
And in Poland, beer volume was down by mid-single digits following a change in stocking policy at its largest distributor.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019