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.
Beer Megadeal Said to Be Close to Winning Chinese Approval
Approvals for both transactions could come as soon as this month based on typical review timelines, clearing one of the final hurdles for the biggest beer deal in history.
Though China’s Ministry of Commerce may attach some conditions to the deal, including the Snow divestiture, regulators see no major hurdles, said one of the people, asking not to be identified because the deliberations are private. Some local beermakers told the ministry that they don’t object to the takeover as it won’t have a big impact on the Chinese market, another person said.
SABMiller shares closed up 3 pence to 4,306 pence in London, erasing an earlier decline. AB InBev shares fell less than 1 percent to 114.95 euros in Belgium.
The merged company would redraw control of the global beer market. Following divestitures, the deal will keep Budweiser, Beck’s and Stella Artois under AB InBev’s roof, while ceding control of brands including Miller in the U.S. and Peroni and Pilsner Urquell in Europe.
In China, the companies agreed to sell SABMiller’s 49 percent stake in its joint venture with China Resources Beer (Holdings) Co., which controls Snow beer, back to its partner.
In clearing these global hurdles, the beer mega deal contrasts with other big proposed tie-ups that unraveled amid antitrust scrutiny, including Halliburton Co.’s failed bid for Baker Hughes Inc., Staples Inc.’s foiled merger with Office Depot Inc. and General Electric Co.’s decision to abandon the sale of its appliance business to Electrolux AB. In the beer deal, the sides were aggressive in offering divestitures from the start --- including the plan for SABMiller to sell Snow -- which may have ultimately helped reduce regulatory resistance, antitrust lawyers have said.
The U.S. Justice Department may clear the tie-up as soon as this month, people familiar with the process have told Bloomberg News. South Africa has yet to bless the deal, which has hit some obstacles amid protests from local unions.
AB InBev and SABMiller declined to comment. China Resources and the commerce ministry didn’t immediately respond to queries.
The merger plan, which the two companies reached in November as a way to gain access to emerging markets, has already won antitrust approval in more than a dozen jurisdictions, including the European Union.
In March, China Resources announced it would buy out SABMiller’s stake in their Chinese venture for $1.6 billion. That deal is also nearing approval from China’s commerce ministry, the people said.
In the U.S., AB InBev has agreed to sell SABMiller’s stake in the MillerCoors joint venture. It may also have to agree to further conditions related to beer distribution, according to people familiar with the matter. Smaller brewers and wholesalers want officials to restrict AB InBev’s control and influence over how beer gets on to store shelves, according to the people.
9 Jun. 2016