Bottler Coca-Cola HBC Mulls Other Options For Russian Business
Soft drinks bottler Coca-Cola HBC AG CCH.L has said that it will evaluate all options for its Russian operations and have a smaller presence in the country, focussing on local brands, after US beverage giant Coca-Cola suspended operations there.
The bottler, which counted Russia as one of its biggest markets, said it was still in the process of implementing the decision by Coca-Cola KO.N.
Hundreds of Western companies have either withdrawn or suspended operations in Russia since the country invaded Ukraine in February while Western governments have imposed sanctions.
HBC is one of Coca-Cola's many bottlers worldwide and holds local Coca-Cola franchises to bottle and sell drinks produced by the beverage giant. Coca-Cola holds a roughly 21% stake in HBC.
The company, whose annual outlook remains withdrawn, said it has stopped placing orders for concentrate in Russia and ceased investments in the market.
The London-listed company said that organic revenue in the first quarter rose 25.9%, excluding Russia and Ukraine.
Rising Input Cost Inflation
The Switzerland-headquartered company said that it increased prices in the quarter to help manage rising input cost inflation, and that has not negatively impacted volumes.