Irn-Bru maker bullish despite consumer outlook

A G Barr, owner of the Irn-Bru, Rubicon and Strathmore soft drink brands, has vowed to maintain marketing spend in the second half of the year to hold its share of the “volatile” soft drinks market.

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The group forecasts revenue will be £123m for the six months to 30 July, up 3.5% on the same period last year. Expectations for the full-year remain “on track”, the company adds.

Increased marketing activity – the group launched campaigns for Irn-Bru and an energy drink targeting women in the first half – did hit operating margins, the company says.

Despite this, it adds, investment in “long term brand equity” and “successful innovation” will be maintained.

The soft drink market, the company claims without quoting sources, grew 1% by volume in the 26 weeks to 9 July, and 6% by value.

“Resilient” market performance was driven by “increased promotional intensity”, the company adds.

In a statement the company says: “The market we operate in remains volatile. However, the soft drinks market remains in growth and A.G. Barr has the proven strategy, brands and executional capability to be successful in its market.”

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