Beverage maker Britwick has increased its dividend payout by 12 per cent after it reported a recovery in sales after easing lockdown restrictions.
The cold drinks firm, which owns the Tango, Purdue and J2O brands, saw business in 2020 and was hit hard in the first half of 2021 in response to the coronavirus crisis and the closure of hospitals and other non-essential stores. .
But as pubs, restaurants and other businesses gradually resumed business by mid-April, sales to Britwick for the six months to September rebounded enough to exceed their pre-Covid level of 3.3 percent.
Recovery: As hospitals resumed trading gradually from mid-April, Britwick’s second-half sales rebounded to 3.3 per cent of their pre-Covid levels.
Britwick said it would hand over a full-year dividend of 24.2p per share to investors, an increase of 12 per cent compared to the previous year.
Revenues in Britain, its largest market, increased more than any other country, expanding its portfolio of products, particularly its mainstream carbonated brands, from £ 71.2million to £ 956.9million.
After the reopening of schools and on-trade outlets, ‘social brands’ such as the J20 and Fruit Shoot returned to growth, but the popularity of drinks sold in small packed formats, including Aqua Libra, Pardes and Lipton, continued to grow. Outdoor time.
In Brazil, meanwhile, sales of Natural Tea and Puro Cocoa jumped 69 percent and 71 percent, respectively, although sales of flavored concentrates fell behind last year’s sharp increase.
However, poor summer weather in France and restrictions on travel and hospitality around the world mean that average earnings per liter outside Britain and Brazil have fallen slightly.
Still, gross pre-tax profits exceeded £ 100 million and underlying revenues for the year rose 6.6 per cent to £ 1.41 billion, as home consumption remained stable despite the relaxation of sanctions.
Preparation: Britwick boss Simon Litherland said the company had taken significant steps to ensure that some of the major raw materials and ingredients were well supplied.
The company acknowledged that it faces challenges from rising costs and supply chain disruption but has been able to ‘successfully navigate’ the problems so far to keep its products on the retailer’s shelves.
Chief executive Simon Litherland said: ‘This year, we have strongly recovered from the effects of the epidemic.
Although there are multiple operating headwinds that lead to increased inflation, we are confident that we will reduce them through a combination of our agile and resilient supply chain, revenue management and cost-saving measures.
The group says accidental supply systems have been put in place for some of the major raw materials and ingredients in the event of severe supply disruption.
“Our significant investment in supply chain capacity has provided a high degree of operational resilience even at the most challenging times and gives us confidence that we can meet future demand,” it added.
New strategy: J2O manufacturer Britwick is focusing on products in fast-growing industries such as plant-based beverages and releasing new flavors of popular brands.
Britwick noted that since the beginning of October, it has seen strong business going on with sales in the first six weeks on a year and two year basis.
It hopes to maintain further momentum by focusing more on products in fast-growing industries such as plant-based beverages and launching new flavors of popular refreshments such as Pepsi MAX Lime and Tango Dark Berries.
Hemel Hempstead-based firm has closed Countpoint, its third-party licensed wholesaler in Ireland, and sold its private juice label business in France due to lower margins.
Russ Mold, AJ Bell’s investment director, said: ‘Hopefully in 2022, investors will be able to refresh it to make further progress on revenue, profit and margins.
The company is looking at a future where plant-based drinks will become more popular as people look to avoid not only meat and dairy but also oils and processed ingredients. The recently acquired Plenish business is ready for a big brand relaunch next year. ‘
Shares of Britwick ended 2.5% higher at £ 9.00 on Wednesday.
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