Heineken has reported growth in volumes of premium brands and its tequila flavoured beer Desperados in the UK market in 2014.
The Dutch brewer reported group revenues up 3.3% for the year and volumes of premium brands up 5.1%. Operating profits were up 7.8% and net profit up 14% to €1.75bn.
The company warned that beer volumes were likely to grow at a slower rate in 2015 after a strong 2014.
It said volume in the premium segment grew by 5.1% in 2014 and the brand saw positive growth across all regions, with particularly strong double digit growth in Brazil, China, France, the UK and Mexico.
Volume of the global brands Desperados, Affligem and Sol Premium delivered double digit growth in the year. Desperados volumes up 19%, with particularly strong growth in the UK, France, Poland and Brazil. Affligem, the Belgian abbey beer brand, delivered volumes up 16%, with strong growth in Western Europe, particularly in France. Affligem is currently available in 31 markets with further roll outs planned in 2015. The UK, Brazil, New Zealand and CCU markets were key drivers of Sol Premium volume growth, which was up firmly double digits.
Jean-François van Boxmeer, chairman of the executive board and chief executive, said: “Our strong performance reflects the success of our strategy. We continued to invest in our portfolio of brands and we have significantly improved our commercial execution. We combined this with compelling consumer marketing and a powerful innovation agenda which contributed €1.5 billion to our revenues.
“As a result, Heineken premium volume grew 5.1% and a number of our global brands achieved double digit growth. We remain committed to our medium term margin guidance, underpinned by a continued focus on efficiency and further cost savings. Whilst we expect further volatility in emerging markets and deflationary pressures in 2015, we are confident that we will deliver further top and bottom line growth in the year ahead.”