Britvic revenues climb to £1.3 billion

Soft drinks company to expand Fruit Shoot roll-out as profit rises

Soft drinks group Britvic has posted full-year revenue growth of 4.4 per cent to £1.3 billion. Photo: Bloomberg

Soft drinks group Britvic has posted full-year revenue growth of 4.4 per cent to £1.3 billion. Photo: Bloomberg

Tue, Nov 26, 2013, 11:53

Soft drinks group Britvic today posted an 18.8 per cent rise in annual operating profit and said it would further expand its Fruit Shoot brand in the United States.

The maker of Robinsons squash said operating profit in the year to September 29 was £135 million (€161 million), up from £112.7 million a year ago and in line with company guidance.

Revenue rose 4.4 per cent to £1.32 billion, helped by a strong fourth quarter when a hot summer and the recovery of its Fruit Shoot brand after last year’s recall boosted trade. Its operating margin rose 120 basis points to 10.4 per cent.

Having rejected an improved proposal from Irn-Bru maker A.G. Barr for an all-share merger in July, Britvic has ramped up its expansion in the US, moved into Spain and will launch Fruit Shoot in India in mid-2014 to help grow its business.

Britvic Ireland’s manufacturing plant in Dublin manufactures Fruit Shoot concentrate for export markets such as the US.

This morning, the firm said it had signed a new 15-year bottling agreement with PepsiCo Americas Beverages for further manufacturing and distribution in the US, which will see Fruit Shoot rolled out to 41 states during 2014, up from 32.

The firm has also outlined a cost cutting drive, which it said was on track to deliver £30 million of cost savings per annum by 2016.

Britvic said trading in the new financial year had started ahead of its first quarter a year ago, and added that it was confident of delivering operating profit of between £148 and £156 million for the new fiscal year.

The company said Britvic Ireland brands including Club, MiWadi and Ballygowan have all gained market share over the year despite difficult trading conditions. In recent weeks, MiWadi won the Success at Home award at the Bord Bia Food & Drink Awards.

Reuters