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Asahi revenue growth slows in second quarter of the year

Following impressive growth in the first quarter of 2023, the pace of acceleration for Asahi Group Holdings has slowed considerably, the company’s latest results show.

While there was much cause for celebration at the start of the year, with Asahi’s revenue growth up 7.9% and core operating profit leaping by more than 24%, there have been fewer fireworks in the second quarter for the Japanese beer giant.

The second quarter of the year (ending 30 June) has seen the company’s revenue grow by a more modest 5.8%, while its core operating profit crept up by 9%.

However, the full year forecast for 2023 remains positive for Asahi, with a revised performance outcome (especially concerning core operating profit and operating profit), largely due to the strength of the alcohol beverage business in Japan.

Asahi now expects its core operating profit to grow by +3.2% year-on-year against its initial forecast at the beginning of the year. On an actual currency basis, core operating profit is also set to rise by +4.2% year-on-year.

“In the first half of the year, we made a steady growth of revenue and core operating profit, mainly attributed to enhanced average selling prices through the implementation of prudent pricing strategies,” said Atsushi Katsuki, president and CEO, Asahi Group Holdings.

“Even in this environment of severe cost pressures, the Asahi Group continues to maintain and expand its competitive advantage in each region, as well as increase profitability.”

He added that “Especially in Japan, business performance is recovering owing to the expansion of on-trade sales and the growth of core brands. Fuelled by the liquor tax revisions in October this year, we will accelerate the growth of the beer category, including the launch of new products.”

Katsuki revealed that, excluding its home market of Japan, Asahi Super Dry, the company’s hero product, “saw a +24% year-on-year growth in sales volume, mainly due to sales expansion in major markets in Asia, Europe and Oceania.”

Asahi is buoyant about its sponsorship of the Rugby World Cup 2023, due to take place in France this September.

“Asahi Super Dry is the Official Beer, and we hope this will be an opportunity to showcase the brand’s value to consumers worldwide and share the excitement,” Katsuki said.

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