NIGERIA – Guinness Nigeria Plc has reported 14% rise in revenue to US$395.07 million from US$347.93 million recorded in the 2017 financial year despite the continued decline of the beer market, reports Beverage Industry News.

The beer market declined by 14% in volume during the year, driven by Ready-to-drink (RTD), stout and lager, which declined by 29%, 15% and 11% respectively.

Both the premium and value categories grew consistently during the period.

Profit after tax for the year ended 30 June 2018 increased 249% to US$18.56 million on the back of a 31% improvement in its operating profit, which rose to US$36.99 million.

According to the company, turnover for the year under review improved despite the challenging business environment and the intense competition in the industry.

This was however offset by the strength of Guinness brands and its adoption of a total beverage alcoholic strategy.

The brewing industry was affected by poor consumer purchasing power in the country, where 27.4% market of malted soft drinks and 19.4% in volume and value were lost.

Chairman of the company, Mr. Babatunde Savage expressed confidence in the company’s strategic initiatives including continued investment in its brands and people and focus to leverage its distribution prowess.

He noted that the company was continually innovating and strengthening its brands to ensure they are the preferred choice in every product category, while promising to sustain its profitability and create value for shareholders.

The company delivered both top line growth and margin expansion realised through increased investment in its brands and strategy execution.

For the coming years, the company looks to focus on the three strategic pillars of productivity, expansion of its portfolio and execution of the commercial footprint initiatives.

Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Baker Magunda, said, “In line with our strategy, Guinness Nigeria remains committed to driving returns on investment to shareholders.

We also remain resolute on our commitment to continuously invest in our business to secure a sustainable future for our stakeholders.

“Guinness Nigeria is a company with strong and diversified portfolio and remains in leading positions in many of the fastest growing categories in the beverage industry.

To ensure continued long-term growth, we are investing in key categories and actively managing the portfolio to ensure we stay ahead of consumer trends.

“Our consumers remain at the heart of everything we do to drive growth, ensuring it benefits both our shareholders and society.”

It paid out a total dividend of US$11.13 million to its shareholders for the period under review, a 318% improvement compared to the previous year.