18 May 2022

Guinness sales soar across Ireland and UK following Covid rules ease

Guinness sales soar across Ireland and UK following Covid rules ease

Guinness sales soar across Ireland and UK following Covid rules ease

Guinness owner Diageo saw strong sales recover as pubs and bars across the globe started reopening with the easing of Covid restrictions. 

Beer sales across Europe were up 44%, with Diageo highlighting strong sales of Guinness in Ireland and Britain. 

Trade was particularly strong in Britain, with overall sales up 19%, including a 13% rise in spirits and a more than 30% jump in Guinness sales in the six months to the end of the year compared with the same period in 2020.

Within spirits, vodka was particularly impressive, with sales up 21% driven by Smirnoff. Baileys and rum also grew but sales of gin declined.

Finance chief Lavanya Chandrashekar said the squeeze is being felt across all parts of the business, including shipping, the cost of raw materials, and higher energy bills.

She said: “We are seeing a higher level of inflation at the business than we’ve historically seen. Utilities specifically are where we are seeing the maximum increase in inflation, with oil and energy costs being higher.”

Aluminium and cereal costs have also increased, leading to price rises in some categories.

Ms Chandrashekar said: “We don’t do pricing action across the board. We have taken the price (rises) in tequila in the US by 4.5%.

“We have taken some prices in emerging markets… Nigeria and Turkey we’ve taken several rounds of pricing in these markets. It’s really on a case-by-base basis and it is done selectively in a very disciplined manner.”

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