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.
Beer market of Vietnam: “Young tiger”Vietnam is one of the few big beer markets that continue to grow steadily. The beer popularity results from its low price, street consumption culture, and social motives. The outlooks of beer market as well as the Vietnamese economy inspire optimism, though the country is heavily dependent on export of goods. The state regulation can be called liberal, but the key risk for brewers is harbored in intensive rising of excise. Within TOP-4 there are two leaders, Sabeco and Heineken that grow at the fastest rates. The first company effectively employs its capacities, the second one focuses on marketing technologies. Almost 80% of the market belongs to century-old brands, yet the middle class and the youth are shifting their interest toward international premium that is growing taking share from the mainstream.
Analysis of beer market in China (on Russian)
Beer market of Ukraine: big three losing weightIn 2016, fast increase of excises and resulting price spike stood in the way of the beer market stabilization. Most of competition (as well as mass sorts) moved to the economy segment of the market. The biggest losses were incurred by the leading three, especially Obolon, which again experienced pressure after reallocation of Efes market share. However, one should already speak of TOP-4. Group Oasis CIS (PPB) became a strong player and competitor to transnational companies. Besides the net sales of many regional medium breweries look rather good and 16-fold cost reduction wholesale trade license for craft brewers opens up a possibility of rapid growth in 2017.
Heineken’s takeover of S&N to be probed
The Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee will look at evidence that there was not enough protection for thousands of S&N pensioners after the takeover by the Dutch lager maker in 2008. The evidence session is expected to take place in the autumn, and it will examine details of the takeover and in particular why Heineken did not pay any discretionary increases in pensions in 2010.
The S&N Pension Group, which was set up to challenge the company’s decision, wrote to the chairman of the BIS select committee in early June requesting a review.
The group claimed that a public undertaking had been given by Heineken during the final stages of the S&N takeover that it was the intention of the Dutch business to continue S&N’s long standing practice of providing discretionary rises on pensions in line with inflation.
But Heineken now says that it never intended to continue the practice and froze pensions where they had a discretion to do so.
Tom Ward, former corporate director of Scottish and Newcastle, said: “We are delighted that the Parliamentary Select Committee is going to hold a wide ranging inquiry. This is a good result as it will allow all the issues to be looked at in detail and with public scrutiny.”
Mr Ward, who is also a spokesman for the pressure group, said: “Before the takeover, we understood that Heineken NV, the parent company stood firmly behind their public and private commitments on pensions. To make a U-turn on this very public undertaking is deeply offensive”.
The pensioners are continuing with their campaign and have been in talks with relevant politicians and the trade union Unite. Charlie McKenna, 73, from Newcastle, was a tanker driver with S&N until he retired in 1999.
He said: “I am very pleased someone is going to look into this now.”
It has also now emerged that many hundreds of pensioners have made individual complaints to the Pension Ombudsman. The UK Take Over Panel has also been contacted to offer background help.
In a statement Heineken said: “The discretionary decision we took last year was based on the outlook for our fund at that time and we will be reviewing it again later this year. Of course we understand the strength of feeling among those who did not receive pension increases.”
The company said it was happy to continue dialogue and justify action to any relevant body who wished to review the matter.
12 Jul. 2011