Heineken returns to growth in Europe though profits tumble

HEINEKEN yesterday reported a 37 per cent decline in first-quarter net profits to €143m (£117.63m), though parts of Europe raised more glasses of the brewery group’s beers.

Like-for-like beer volumes rose 1.5 per cent, while revenues rose 3.4 per cent to €4.04bn.

Currency movements and the divestment of the Finnish Hartwall unit hurt the firm’s results. Heineken was also hit by particularly low sales in Russia and Vietnam, which it said was due respectively to a tough beer market and soft economic conditions.

Chairman and chief executive Jean-Francois van Boxmeer said the firm maintained momentum in Africa and saw signs of recovery after a tough few years in Europe, where volumes rose 2.3 per cent.

About 60 per cent of the group’s operating profit now comes from emerging markets

Heineken noted that exchange rates will continue to harm reported revenues.