The company yesterday reported group revenues of £304.3m (€408m) for the first quarter of its current financial year, covering the 12 weeks to the end of December. This represented a 0.4% year-on-year decline.
However, in Ireland —where it significantly upped its presence eight years ago via the purchase of the former soft drinks division of C&C and inherited such well-known brands as Club, MiWadi and Ballygowan — the group said revenue increased by 2.8% on a year-on-year basis.
Regarding Ireland, management said: “There was a decline in third-party brands sold through Counterpoint [the company’s expanded licensed wholesale operation], which is reported in our revenue number, but not our volume and ARP [average realised price] metrics. As a result, our own brand performance was stronger than the reported number compared to the take-home market, as measured by Nielsen, which grew volume and value by 3% and 0.6%, respectively.”
The first-quarter figures bode well for the Irish operations. In the 12 months to the end of September, Britvic Ireland suffered a 6.3% drop in revenues to €162.2m
In Britain, Britvic saw a 1.4% year-on-year revenue decline for the first quarter, while in France a 2.3% annualised rise was noted.
In its international distribution business, Britvic saw quarterly revenues increase by nearly 4% on a year-on-year footing.