Global hop marketA local alternative to mass beer suggested by independent brewers has been successful and is now altering the global market. Beer is becoming more diversified, so transnational companies have to accept the new game rules and to switch focus to young and fast growing markets. All these processes increased the demand for aroma and bitter hop as well as their acreage expansion on two continents. However now there appeared a downward trend of alcohol consumption in the world, so even special sorts can soon turn to be sufficient. In this connection the dynamic American hop market is already facing some problems. EU hop producers have become more cautious, they are not racing to exceed the demand and look forward with more confidence, judging by the contract terms.
Hop Market in RussiaGermany still dominates the Russian market, yet over the recent two years one has been able observe a continuous success of Czech hop suppliers. Their expansion and growing popularity of hops from the United States became the drivers of supplies growth in 2016 despite the preceding modest harvest crop in the EU, as well as the factor of relative stability in 2017. In this connection, in 2017, the ratio of the varieties continued to shift towards the aroma ones, and the supplies of Magnum hop and other alpha varieties were reduced. However, the import of bitter hop pellets is partially replaced by extracts, especially from the major beer manufacturers. Total volumes of alpha acid supplies, according to our estimation, decreased by approximately 5% and returned to the level of 2015. Barth Haas Group continues dominating the hop products market; HVG also increased its weight. At the same time, Morris Hanbury significantly reduced the supplies in 2017.
10+1 trends of Russian beer market 2015-2017Despite of the moderately negative prognoses for 2017, the beer market can be stabilized soon. Yet the years of the negative dynamics have resulted in marketing being limited just to “optimization” and the art of balancing between price and volumes. Bigger supermarkets share means stronger trade marketing. These processes are connected to the majority of the described trends. At the same time, the federal brands inflation leads to searching for new tastes, sales channels and contact formats that expand the product range and diversify the beer market, but do not imply a substantial volume increase. Let us enumerate and further discuss the ten trends of the beer market we can see in 2015-2017 as well as the major event of 2017.
Beer market of Ukraine 2017In the first half of 2017, the Ukrainian beer market goes on decreasing slowly. Yet, the companies manage to compensate their lost volumes by raising prices and improving the sales structures. This results in the mid price market segment reduction while the sales of premium brands are rising. These processes are connected to position strengthening of companies Carlsberg Group and Oasis and the market share reduction of Obolon. Most of the novelties by the market leaders belong to craft or hard lemon categories.
Beer market of Russia 2016: PET goes to draftThe beer market of Russia was warmed up by the hot summer, but the preparation for large volume PET prohibition has already impacted it negatively. The year was successful for Efes, MBC and regional producers; Carlsberg’s positions were virtually stable but AB InBev and Heineken lost a part of market share having focused on the sales profitability. The dynamics of big brands was determined by how much the companies were willing to keep the prices down or by their promotional activity. In this context the economy segment of the beer market and sales of inexpensive draft beer were increasing. The premium segment started shrinking due to license brands migrating to the mainstream segment.
BGI Ethiopia Acquires 25pc of Raya Brewery’s Shares
BGI managers signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Friday, July 1, 2011, with promoters of Raya Brewery, claiming 25pc of the 650 million Br green project to establish a brewery in the northern town of Maichew, Tigray Regional State.
The deal was signed between Eyessuswork Zafu, deputy chairman of Raya Brewery, and JN Blavier, CEO of BGI Ethiopia, as well as Jobst Meyer Zu Beisen, CEO of Brewtech, a founding partner based in Hamburg, Germany, which Raya brought on board by conceding 26pc of the company in August 2010.
Both Eyessuswork and Blavier signed the document in their own offices, with Beisen using Raya’s, source disclosed to Fortune.
Brewtech has agreed to pay 65 million Br for 65,000 shares, each valued at 1,000 Br, and will undertake the turnkey project for the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) of the plant.
The plant will be the first to be installed in the northern part of the country, in Alamata Wereda, 600km north of Addis Abeba. When completed, the brewery will have an annual production capacity of 600,000 hectolitres (hl), 16.7pc of the total current production in the market, bottled by the five operational breweries, among which BGI is a major actor.
There is a gap of 3.6 million hectolitres between demand and supply, according to research by Access Capital. This puts Ethiopia’s per capita beer consumption at four litres, a much lower volume than that of Kenya’s 12 litres and South Africa’s 59 litres, according to the same study.
“The potential of establishing a strong identity base by being the only brewery in the region and the availability of a mountain spring close by prompted our company to become involved,” Beisen had told Fortune back in November 2010, after he signed the MoU with Raya.
Brewtech first came on board as a partner to install and manage the soon to be established Raya, but its continued inclusion has been one of the issues of negotiations between promoters of the brewery and BGI negotiators.
The promoters of Raya are chaired by Tsadikan G. Tensae (Lt Gen), a former chief of staff of the Ethiopian Army who was not in the country when the MoU was signed last week, while BGI’s negotiators include Isayas Hadera, the company’s marketing manager.
There is a bigger ambition behind BGI’s acquisition of significant shares in a project that is still on the drawing board and has a long way to go before attempting to raise capital.
Raya Brewery was established by 58 founding shareholders, including Yemane (Jamaica) Kidane, former chief of staff at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA); Selome Tadesse, former general manager of the Ethiopian Television and Radio Enterprise (ETRE); and Eyessuswork, general manager of United Insurance and president of the Ethiopian Chamber of Commerce and Sectoral Associations (ECCSA), in April 2010, with a registered capital of 2.5 million Br.
Named after the town where Tsadikan spent his early school years and the area where its plant is to be erected, the project has secured a 150,000sqm plot of land, lease free, from the Tigray administration.
Despite their success in securing such a vast plot with lush green land where there is proven ground water, success in mobilising equity from the public has proven elusive.
The group has only had marginal success in raising up to 80 million Br subscribed shares, of which 60 million Br is paid up, according to sources in the company.
“The coming into the picture of BGI means a lot to our drive to raise more capital from the market,” a promoter told Fortune.
BGI has to accept the terms dictated by the promoters, according to those close to the negotiations.
Ethiopia’s foremost brewer, with a treasure brand of St George acquired from the state back in the 1990s for 10 million dollars, had to agree not to change the colour and logo of the brand. Yet, the operational management of Raya will remain with Brewtech, as the latter has agreed to run the company for five years, sources disclosed.
It is a price BGI appears to be happy with paying in order to keep its hold in the Ethiopian beer market, perhaps threatened by the arrival of Heineken. The latter has acquired Harar and Bedele breweries from the state, beating the bid put in by BGI, after offering 2.7 billion Br.
The French owned BGI Ethiopia remains the country’s largest brewer, after adding a new plant in Hawassa, 273km south of Addis Abeba, with a capacity of producing 400,000hl. This addition brings its annual beer production to 1.9 million hectolitres, commanding a little over half of Ethiopia’s beer market.
Its joining hands in a green project that eyes to brew 300,000hl will not only add to its production capacity but pave the way for it to have access to the northern market which is now controlled by its brand, St George, and its competitor, Dashen, where it once owned shares, industry experts said.
Having the production capacity of over two million hectolitres will certainly give BGI Ethiopia a competitive edge over its most feared rival, Heineken, whose two breweries have a combined annual production capacity of 750,000hl.
BGI’s acquiring shares in Raya is hoped to make a sixth brewery in the Ethiopian market a reality, according to a promoter.
Raya’s promoters have pledged that their factory will be up and running in one and half years. Once operational, they promised hopeful shareholders (which number close to 2,000, according to one promoter) they will fully recover their initial investment within four years, with a return on investment of 25pc.
In its first year, Raya promoters project revenues of 264 million Br after tax with 11.7 million Br in profit, estimated to reach 89.1 million Br in subsequent years. The complete payback of loans they plan to take from banks will extend to eight years, according to the feasibility study of Raya’s projected performance for the next 15 years.
5 Jul. 2011