Drinks maker Britvic, the brand portfolio of which includes Ballygowan and MiWadi, has published a new trading update and outlook.
According to the company's trading update, in the three month period that ended on December 31, 2020, which was the first quarter of its current financial year, Britvic's total revenue was £328.1 million. The company said that, on a comparable basis of constant currency and excluding the disposal of the French private label juice business, this revenue figure represents a 5.8% year-on-year decline.
Britvic stated that its brands continued to win in the channels open to the company during the quarter, further extending at-home share gains in its key growth markets of Great Britain and Brazil.
In Great Britain, Britvic's total revenue declined by 4.1% during the three month period that ended on December 31, 2020, with strong at-home growth of 11.9% being offset by a decline of 32.5% in out-of-home, resulting in adverse pack and channel mix.
The company said that its Brazil revenue continued to grow strongly at 25.6%, whereas comparable rest of world revenue fell by 19.3%.
Britvic stated, "The introduction in GB and Ireland of tighter pre-Christmas COVID-19 restrictions, and the subsequent national lockdown measures, have put further pressure on sales in both the hospitality sector and on the go consumption. While there remains considerable uncertainty over the depth and duration of future restrictions, we anticipate they will remain in place at least through our second quarter. Consequently, we would expect performance to continue to be significantly affected by similar adverse channel and pack mix to that which we saw in the second half of FY20, and gradually improve following the lifting of restrictions.
"While we will continue to be disciplined in our management of cash and discretionary spend, we remain confident in our strategy and in the momentum we have built in the channels open to us. It therefore remains our intention to rebuild investment behind our brands, routes to market and people during our second half. We expect to make further progress against our strategic initiatives this year, however, profit growth will remain subject to the pace of the easing of restrictions."
Britvic CEO Simon Litherland commented, "Trading in the first quarter continued to be impacted by COVID-19 restrictions. Our portfolio of family favourite brands has, however, again performed well in the channels open to us, assisted by the additional flexibility we now enjoy as a result of investment in our GB supply chain. I remain very proud of how the Britvic team continue to respond with pace and agility to the changing landscape. While the introduction of the latest restrictions will undoubtedly impact this year's results, we will continue to implement our strategy. We therefore intend to rebuild investment behind our brands, people and planet initiatives, and stay focussed on our medium and long-term potential.
"Britvic is a fantastic business operating in a highly resilient category. With a team of dedicated and passionate people and market-leading brands, we are confident that we will continue to successfully navigate the pandemic, emerge stronger, and be at the forefront of the recovery when it comes."
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