Tuesday 18 June 2019

Robinsons' adult approach helps Britvic beat sugar tax

Simon Litherland.
Simon Litherland.
Ellie Donnelly

Ellie Donnelly

The implementation of the sugar tax in the UK earlier this year has failed to sour results from Britvic, with demand for the company's Robinsons brand surging after it released drinks targeting adults.

"Robinsons is back into growth and has benefited from our innovation," said CEO Simon Litherland.

Shares climbed as much as 7.9pc in London yesterday, the most since November, on strong performance in the first half of the year. The figures slightly benefited from retailers stocking up on drinks prior to the implementation of the levy, Mr Litherland said.

Revenue at the company increased 4.5pc year-on-year to £733m (€626m) in the 28 weeks to April 15. However, profit after tax at the maker of MiWadi decreased 13.7pc to £33.3m, part of which was due to a £21.6m spend on the company's planned business capability programme.

In Ireland revenue increased 13.1pc to £86.6m.

The company said that the growth in Ireland was driven by the performance of the company's low and no sugar brands, including MiWadi, Pepsi MAX and Ballygowan. On the matter of the sugar tax in Ireland, Britvic noted that its introduction falls outside the period being reported.

Meanwhile, a reversal of impairment in the Ballygowan trademark of £9.2m offset an impairment in the Britvic brand in Ireland of £2.2m and an impairment in the Fruite brand in France of £4.4m. (Additional reporting Bloom berg)

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