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Bad weather compounds Norwich manufacturer Britvic’s woes

09:11 19 July 2012

General views around the Robinsons soft drinks factory at Carrow Works, Norwich
Robinsons Fruit Shoot production line

Picture: James Bass
For: EDP BUSINESS
EDP Pics © 2007    Tel: (01603) 772434

General views around the Robinsons soft drinks factory at Carrow Works, Norwich Robinsons Fruit Shoot production line Picture: James Bass For: EDP BUSINESS EDP Pics © 2007 Tel: (01603) 772434

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2007

Bad weather at a key time for Robinsons manufacturer Britvic has compounded the impact of a recall at its Norwich factory.

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In its third quarter results out today, the company said performance had been materially impacted by the very poor weather as it saw sales slump 7.6pc on an actual exchange rate basis.

The manufacturer, which also makes Tango drinks, has reported to the stock market two weeks after the company was forced to issue a product recall of it Robinsons Fruit Shoot and Fruit Shoot Hydro product which it said had impacted its third quarter revenue growth by about 2pc.

Paul Moody, chief executive, said: “The third-quarter has been extremely challenging for Britvic. The weak consumer environment and very disappointing weather at a key time for soft drink sales have had a marked impact on our performance. The decision to recall Fruit Shoot resulted in a further negative impact towards the end of the quarter.

“As announced last week, these events caused us to re-set our expectations for the full year and our guidance remains unchanged.

“In the foreseeable future, our resources will be fully focused on re-establishing Fruit Shoot in the market as soon as possible,” he added.

Internationally it was a better picture with its continued average realised price growth in France, up 6.9pc with revenue growth of 4.3pc.

The company also saw “strong progress” of Fruit Shoot in the USA, which is unaffected by the recall.

Mr Moody said: “Our other key priorities are to drive an improved performance from the strong brands across the group, ensure that we build and realise the value of our emerging US Fruit Shoot business and underpin the profitability of the company, with a strong emphasis on cash generation and rigorous cost management.”

As a result of the recall the company as revised up it capital expenditure for 2012 to £50m and it is now reviewing its plans for 2013.

The Fruit Shoot and Fruit Shoot Hydro recall was as a result of a new sports cap, in all markets except the USA, Australia and Republic of Ireland. All sales made in Q3 with the new sports cap, which either have been or are expected to be refunded have been removed from these numbers.

Britvic manufactures Tango, J2O, Fruit Shoots, Teisseire and MiWadi as well as PepsiCo brands such as Pepsi, 7UP and Mountain Dew Energy which Britvic produces and sells in Great Britain (“GB”) and Ireland under exclusive PepsiCo agreements.

Britvic will publish its 52-week trading update on 18 October, with the preliminary results announcement following on 28 November 2012.

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