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C&C profits dip

By BFN News | 07:35 AM | Wednesday 29 October, 2014

C&C Group's operating profits fell by 2.7% to 69.2m euros in the six months to the end of August and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation fell by 2.2% to 81.0m euros. The manufacturer, marketer and distributor of branded cider, beer, wine and soft drinks said net revenues were up 9.3% at 368.1m euros. Chief executive Stephen Glancey said: "The strength of our core business in Ireland & Scotland underpinned profit delivery of 69.2m euros in the period. Given the lower than expected contribution from the US and England & Wales businesses, this is a solid outcome. "Our businesses in Ireland & Scotland are the cornerstone of the Group representing 86% of operating profit. Central to both are strong brands and excellence in customer service. In these geographies we are delivering on our differentiated and focussed strategy of creating multi-beverage branded distribution models. In Ireland we combined our operations, and the C&C Gleeso's business now spans the Island of Ireland. With integration of the Gleeson's business complete and improving consumer sentiment, we are well positioned to drive future earnings growth. "Scotland reported a resilient performance despite the significant task of integrating Wallaces and Tennent Caledonian. The acquisition is on track to deliver expected returns and integration will be completed early next year. This will ultimately provide a strong foundation for growing our combined business. "The overall UK cider market remains challenging. Magners underperformed the market in the first half and we saw only modest improvement in our Shepton Mallet division in volume and value. While profit contribution is small in the context of the Group, management are evaluating internally the optimal structure of the business in England & Wales. "In the US, performance remains below expectation and the Woodchuck brand has been further impacted by the disruption of new market entrants. While we have re-based our expectations in the US, the market remains both attractive and dynamic and we are confident in the long-term prospects for the category generally and specifically our US cider business. In time, we expect to participate meaningfully in category growth. "Export performance has been encouraging across Europe, Asia and Canada. Excluding Australia, Magners volumes grew by 18.6% while Tennent's export volumes grew by 12.9%. Australia remains challenging with distributor issues still to be resolved." Story provided by

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