Bond gives Heineken a sales boost

Heineken’s link with James Bond and the London Olympics saw the beer enjoy a surge in volume in 2012.

Daniel Craig as James BondHeineken partnered with the makers of Bond and Daniel Craig swapped his vodka martini for a bottle of Heineken in the Skyfall movie, which was released last year. The Dutch beer was also the official lager supplier at the London Olympics.

The Dutch group, whose products also include Fosters, Newcastle Brown Ale and John Smith’s, said overall Heineken volumes rose 5.3% in 2012 and like-for-like volumes of Heineken grew 3.7% in Western Europe.

Despite the group’s beer brands gaining market share in the UK, France, Ireland and Belgium overall beer volumes across Western Europe still fell by 2%.

Chief executive Jean-Francois van Boxmeer said: “The higher growth regions of Africa, Latin America and Asia Pacific are expected to more than offset volume weakness in European markets affected by continued economic uncertainty and government-led austerity measures.”

The brewer also reported a fall in demand for Strongbow, with overall volumes of the cider down 3%, but van Boxmeer said the group would continue to seek opportunities in Europe.

Profits before exceptional items rose 1.6% to 1.7 billion euros (£1.5 billion) on a like-for-like basis last year as it reported cost savings of 196 million euros (£168 million).

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