News briefs: Brewer results and lightweight ales

By Neil Merrett

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Molson coors, Coors brewing company, Molson coors brewing company

This week, Carlsberg and Molson Coors detail their financial performances during the opening half of the year, and a leading UK retailer expands its focus on sustainable packaging.

Carlsberg expects strong first fiscal half

Brewer Carlsberg says that it expects to post a six per cent hike in beer sales volumes for the half of 2008 on an organic basis, helped once again by its operations in Eastern Europe.

As part of an interim statement regarding how the company has fared during the last half year, the company claimed that its entire international operations had posted sales improvements over the period.

Overall beer sales volume growth for the company is expected to reach 24 per cent over the period, the company said.

Net revenue over the period for the company’s global operations rose by seven per cent, with operating profits up by 22 per cent.

The group attributed the performance to a strategy of higher pricing of its brands and an expanded portfolio of goods owing to the purchase of former partner Scottish & Newcastle’s (S&N) shares in the Baltic Beverages Holding (BBH) joint venture.

Molson Coors looking past cost worries

Molson Coors​has announced a 16.4 per cent decline​in​operating profit to $243.4m as it looks to a future US joint venture with rival Miller.

Net sales for the company’s combined operations rose by seven per cent over the six-month period to $4.1bn.

However, operating margins were down over the period by 1.6 percentage points to 5.6 per cent over the same time the previous year, according to the company.

The company said that the performance reflected strong growth in sales of its core branded products, though energy and commodity costs continued to hit the group hard.

Group president Peter Swinburn said that the combination of its own US operations with those of Miller would significantly shape up its operations in the market by improving cost efficiency of the operations.

“This new venture fundamentally changes the game in the US beer industry by creating a stronger and more competitive company,”​ he stated. “MillerCoors is bringing new energy to the beer industry and will drive profitable growth, which provides Molson Coors Brewing Company with important new financial resources to continue building our brands in our core markets and around the world."

Co-op targets extension to own brand green-pack focus

UK-based retailer the Co-operative has announced it is launching lighter weight glass packaging for its own-brand beers as it moves to extend its focus on more sustainable beverage packaging.

The company has announced that its 500ml private brand ale products will come in 300g glass bottles that are 22 per cent lighter than those previously used to package beer.

The weight reduction policy is expected to significantly cut annual carbon emissions required to produce the brands, according to the group.

Last month, the Co-operative claimed that it has become the first retailer in the UK to supply its entire line of own-brand soft drinks in 100 per cent recycled Polyethylene terephthalate (rPET)-derived bottles.

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