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Coca-Cola HBC Sees Signs Of Recovery After H1 Profit Slides

By Dave Simpson

Soft drinks bottler Coca Cola HBC AG has posted a drop in its first-half profit due to coronavirus-related closures of restaurants, cinemas and other public places, while saying that its sales have recovered some momentum from April lows.

The company, which bottles and sells Coca-Cola Co drinks in 28 countries, said that comparable its operating profit fell by 35.8% to €208.8 million for the six months that ended on June 26, beating company-supplied consensus of €191.7 million.

HBC said that out-of-home volumes, which include sales at hotels, restaurants and cafés, during the initial weeks of lockdowns fell by 70%-90% but improved to declines of 25%-50% in May and June and 10%-40% in July.

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The company's out-of-home channel typically accounts for slightly over 40% of its revenue.

The Switzerland-based company said that its retail sales have improved since April, when performance was hit by some customer de-stocking.

Negative Impact

HBC said that it expects a negative impact for 2020 due to weaker consumer environment and tourist season, as well as the risk of a second coronavirus wave.

US-based Coca-Cola Co owns a 23.2% stake in Coca-Cola HBC, according to Refinitiv data.

News by Reuters, edited by Hospitality Ireland. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.

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