Heineken sales slump as downturn hits drinkers

HEINEKEN yesterday reported third-quarter sales at the bottom of expectations, as poor summer weather, austerity measures, and low consumer confidence hit European and US drinking.

The Dutch brewer – whose main brands are Heineken and Amstel – said volumes rose sharply in Africa, Asia and Latin America but were lower overall on a like-for-like basis because of weakness in mature markets.

Like-for-like sales fell 2.2 per cent. overall. Revenue rose 13 per cent to €4.619bn (£3.9bn). Net profit rose 10 per cent, on a like-for-like basis, to €520m. For the full-year, Heineken repeated its forecast that net profit would grow by at least a low double-digit percentage. “In the UK we were hurt by England dropping out of the World Cup so quickly,” said chief financial officer Rene Hooft Graafland.