Bulmers owner C&C Group report an operating loss of €59.6 million

Bulmers owner C&C Group report an operating loss of €59.6 million

By Maurice Garvey

Bulmers owner C&C Group reported an operating loss of €59.6 million for the year ending February 2021, as a direct result of the impact of Covid-19.

Up to 80 per cent of C&C’s pre Covid net revenue derived from the hospitality sector, which was decimated during the pandemic.

Bulmers 1

Bulmers owner C&C Group are based at Bulmers House in Crumlin

Net revenue of €736.9 million decreased 56.1 per cent versus last year for the drinks maker, which is headquartered at Bulmer House in Crumlin.

Financial results for the 12 months ended February 2021, however indicated a net revenue growth of 14.2 per cent in off-trade in FY2021 versus last year.

During periods where trading restrictions eased, the group returned to profit and cash generation.

Free cash outflow was limited to €91.2 million pre-exceptionals as a result of cost control measures implemented.

The group said they took “proactive steps to mitigate, where possible, the negative financial and operational impacts” of Covid.

“Supporting customers with various initiatives, picking up excess stock, replacing old kegs for new, credit terms and loan moratoriums, order and delivery options, ranging advice and promotions for the reopening of the hospitality sector,” they said.

To maximise available cash flow, the group implemented a number of measures, including the issuing of approximately €140 million of US private placement notes in March 2020, and various working capital initiatives, including temporary extensions to supplier payments terms and agreeing deferrals with the UK and Irish tax authorities.

The group also availed of government support initiatives including the furlough scheme to support 2,000 jobs.

David Forde, C&C Group Chief Executive Officer, said: “FY2021 has presented an extraordinary set of circumstances which have challenged our business, and our industry, at every level. With approximately 80 per cent of C&C’s pre Covid-19 net revenue derived from the hospitality sector, the pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on the group.

“Thanks to the prompt and decisive action of our team and our resilient business model, we have successfully navigated these challenges to date.

“We implemented responses to the near-term challenges to maximise liquidity, support customers, reduce costs and fulfil off-trade demand from the immediate change in consumption dynamics. Our top priority continues to be protecting all our stakeholders.”

He said the group are looking forward to 2022 “with optimism” in the UK and Ireland drinks market.

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