Heineken to increase marketing spend

Heineken has vowed to increase investment to build its brands despite reporting a drop in first-half revenue.

The brewer, which owns the Heineken, Amstel, Sol and Strongbow brands, says global revenue dipped 2% on an organic basis to €7.5bn (£6.17bn), hit by slower sales in Western Europe.

Jean-François van Boxmeer, chairman of the executive board and chief executive, says the company will continue its “focus on brand building and increase investments in key brands” which will be largely offset by cost savings.

He adds that its key brands benefitted from increased marketing investments in the first-half. Marketing and selling costs increased 18% to €990m (£814m) in the period. .

Heineken UK delivered “strong” earnings growth “driven by better pricing and significant cost reductions”, the company says.

Organic net profit growth for the full year is expected to be “at least in low double digits”, the company says, with anticipated gains in developing markets offsetting slower growth in Europe and the USA.

First-half, net profit increased by 17% on an organic basis, driven by cost savings.

Half-year updates from brewers have presented a mixed outlook for the industry.

Anheuser-Busch InBev recently forecast continued growth after the World Cup boosted its first-half performance, while Carlsberg increased its outlook.

SAB Miller, however, recently reported a decline in volumes.

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