Andrew Starke

Coca-Cola Amatil has forecast high single-digit growth in its pre-tax earnings for the remainder of this year although Pacific Beverages, a joint venture between CCA and SABMiller, continued to record a loss.

Yesterday the company unveiled a first-half net profit of $212.7 million, up 12.1 per cent on the prior corresponding half-year.

“Cycling the very strong first half of 2009 in Australia was always going to be challenging, so to deliver volume growth of 1.5 per cent, with revenue growth of 5.5 per cent, was a very good outcome,” said CCA CEO, Terry Davis.

CCA’s share of the losses incurred by Pacific Beverages was $1 million, down from a loss of $2.4 million in the first half of 2009.

In a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange, CCA said Pacific Beverages had continued to invest in building its brands and growing its market share of the Australian premium alcoholic beverages market.

“While the beer market overall has experienced a softer start to the year, Pacific Beverages’ premium beer portfolio has continued to grow volumes and market share and now accounts for almost 10 percent of the premium beer market in Australia.”

Grolsch was the stand out performer, growing volumes by almost 40 percent as a result of increased ranging in major retailers.

Pacific Beverages now has five brands in the Top 20 premium brands in Australia, with Peroni Nastro Azzurro and Miller Chill positioned in the Top 10.

The business expects to further expand the availability of its beers in 2010, with a major focus on the expansion of Peroni and Grolsch draught beer which will be locally produced at the new Bluetongue Brewery from September 2010.

Beam Full Spirits and alcoholic ready-to drink beverages increased share of the market by 2.0 percent to 27.1 percent.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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