By Ian Neubauer
Sales revenue for Pacific Beverages — a joint venture between Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA) and SABMiller — has grown by more than 150 per cent over the past 12 months, CCA announced at an investor briefing in New Zealand last week.
Investors attending the briefing, which was part of tour of CCA’s New Zealand bottling operations, also heard alcoholic beverages would account for 25 per cent of CCA’s earnings growth over the next two years. This compared to 30 per cent growth for carbonated soft drinks — CCA’s core business.
CCA has expanded its beverage portfolio significantly over the past five years and is now a serious contender in the fruit juice, energy drinks and health drinks categories.
In the past 12 months alone it relaunched its Mother energy drink with great fanfare and even greater success, doubled sales growth for its imported premium beer brands Peroni and Miller, and gave the go-ahead for a $50-million redevelopment of the Bluetongue Brewery in the Hunter region of NSW.
CCA reconfirmed its profit guidance of 7 per cent growth in earnings before tax at the briefing, implying its position had not been weakened by the global financial crisis.
But it warned sales contributions from November and December remain critical to its overall earnings growth and that any material change in consumer demand during this period may impact on the full-year result.
CCA shares were trading at $8.76 at 4:00pm today (October 20) compared to $8.14 seven days ago.