Dutch beer giant Heineken on Wednesday reported a decline in first-quarter sales and said it sought approval to sell its Russian business after criticism.
The world’s second-largest brewer apologized in March for creating “ambiguity” about its 2022 pledge to leave Russia following the invasion of Ukraine.
Heineken said in a statement that it “continues to make progress towards transferring ownership of its operations in Russia and has submitted an application for approval to the Russian Federation authorities in line with local regulatory requirements.”
“There is a limit to what we can say before this process is complete. If approved, we will share details about the contract with the buyer.”
Heineken is facing social media calls for a boycott after a Dutch investigative website reported in February that the company continued to operate in Russia.
Heineken said beer sales were down 3% year-on-year, particularly due to lack of demand in “key markets” in Nigeria and Vietnam.
In a statement accompanying the earnings release, CEO Dolf van den Brink said: “Our performance in Europe and the Americas is encouraging.
“Results in the Asia-Pacific, Africa, Middle East and Eastern Europe regions were disappointing, with temporary volatility in Vietnam and Nigeria hampering demand softening,” Bulwer said.
Sales increased to €7.6 billion ($8.3 billion) from around €7.0 billion in the first quarter of 2022. This is partly due to price increases brought in to cover rising raw material costs.
The brewer posted a net profit of €403 million in the first quarter, down 3% from €417 million in the same period last year.
Founded in the 19th century in Amsterdam, Heineken sells over 300 brands, including Strongbow and Amstel. The group is the second largest beer company in the world after AB InBev of Belgium and Brazil.
We employ over 85,000 people worldwide.
https://www.expatica.com/nl/general/heineken-seeks-green-light-for-sale-of-russian-brewery-580467/ Heineken wants green light to sell Russian brewery