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Denmark. Royal Unibrew’s “positive earnings trend continues” in Q1 2011

Royal Unibrew reported its revenue — measured organically — declined in Q1 by just below 1% primarily because Easter is in Q2 in 2011, whereas in 2010 it was in Q1. In spite of the revenue development, the positive earnings trend in Royal Unibrew continued, and earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) increased by DKK 30 million to DKK 40 million. This is as expected. At the same time, EBIT margin went up in all group segments compared to 2010, which is primarily due to increased efficiency and lower expenses. Royal Unibrew expects to commence buying back shares for treasury for DKK 110 million immediately upon conclusion of the Annual General Meeting, it said. The outlook for 2011 is maintained.

“In light of the timing of Easter, we are content to have on the whole maintained our revenue while defending or winning market shares. And not least, we are pleased that, in spite of the revenue development, we have been able to continue improving our financial results. In Q1 we also finalised the agreement concerning the merger of Royal Unibrew Polska with Polish Van Pur, which is a significant step towards achieving the targeted position in Poland. All in all we have now realised the major structural changes of our business, which means that we can focus completely on developing our existing activities and on realising the strategic targets established for 2011?, says Henrik Brandt, CEO.

HIGHLIGHTS

•Generally market shares were won or defended on branded beer as well as soft and malt drinks.
•Net revenue declined by just below 5% to DKK 745 million. Adjusted for the sale of the Caribbean breweries and the Polish activities, the organic revenue decline was below 1%.
•EBITDA increased by DKK 12 million to DKK 76 million.
•Earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) increased by DKK 30 million from 2010 amounting to DKK 40 million.
•Profit before tax amounted to DKK 21 million compared to a loss of DKK 21 million in 2010.
•Free cash flow amounted to a negative DKK 28 million in Q1 2011 compared to a negative DKK 6 million in 2010.
•Net interest-bearing debt increased by DKK 45 million in the quarter to DKK 815 million.

OUTLOOK

Royal Unibrew maintains the outlook for 2011 as announced in March 2011 as follows:

•Net revenue: DKK 3,400-3,550 million
•EBITDA: DKK 575-625 million
•EBIT: DKK 435-485 million

4 May. 2011

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