In their latest quarterly report Heineken N.V. have reported an overall beer volume growth of -8.1% for the year so far.
CEO Dolf van den Brink stated “Our performance during the third quarter continued to be impacted by the COVID-19 crisis,” but he also noted they have seen a pick-up in sales volumes in the latest quarter “as many lockdowns eased, our volumes improved sequentially compared to the last quarter”.
Beer volumes in the Asia Pacific region have fared slightly better, declining organically by only 7.3% year-to-date. This due in most part to lower volume in Vietnam and the continued declines in other key regional markets affected by recurring lockdowns, the lack of international tourism and increasingly negative consumer sentiment their report says.
According to Heineken’s recently released Third Quarter Results their volume grew double-digits in the last quarter (July-September) in more than 25 markets including Brazil, China, the USA, Nigeria, Singapore, Poland and the UK.
In Vietnam Heineken continues to outpace the market while beer volume declined by a high-single-digit in 2020 following the second wave of COVID-19 restrictions and the price increase at the end of June. They have, however, grown their market penetration and have solid momentum now behind a range of innovative products including Heineken® Silver, Heineken® 0.0 and local beer brand Bia Viet.
In Cambodia, beer volume declined in the high-thirties following a steep increase of promotional activity in the market and by economic conditions affected by the rise in unemployment from the tourism, garment export and construction industries.
Malaysia and Indonesia saw double digit declines, an improvement for Malaysia versus the previous quarter as the on-trade gradually recovered however since mid-October the Malaysian government has imposed new movement restrictions and closed part of the on-trade again which is expected to again affect sales.
Indonesia sales has been impacted by a second lockdown imposed on the on-trade and consumption from international tourism remained absent. Beer volume in Bali declined by close to 80%.
Growth, however has been strong in South Korea where beer volume increased in the mid-thirties driven by improved penetration and distribution of new brands and line extensions. Likewise in China, where they are into the second year of a strategic partnership with China Resources Beer (CRB) they have seen strong double digit growth.
According to the report Heineken® grew by strong double-digits 9n China as it continues to be rolled-out throughout CRB’s strong route-to-market, entering new channels and through the successful introduction of Heineken® Silver.
Van den Brink did note, however, that they were viewing the future with caution “The situation remains highly volatile and uncertain. We expect rolling outbreaks of Covid-19 to continue to meaningfully impact many of our markets in addition to rising recessionary pressures.”