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Another Successful Year For Nichols

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Another Successful Year For Nichols

Another Successful Year For Nichols
March 15
12:02 2011

UK-based soft drinks group Nichols increased profit before tax (pre-exceptional) by 23% to £15.1m on sales up 16% to £83.9m for the year ended December 31st 2010. Nichols’ brand portfolio includes Vimto, which is sold in over 65 countries, and Sunkist and Panda, which are sold in the UK. The company operates in both the ‘stills’ and ‘carbonated’ drinks categories and also in the soft drinks on dispense market, where its brands include Cabana, Ben Shaws and Dayla.

Whilst the UK soft drinks market grew by 7%, the group’s domestic sales increased by 15% to £69m, buoyed by the launch of Cherry Vimto, which delivered incremental sales of £3.7m. Nichols’ international revenues increased by 24% to £15.4m, with significant growth coming from Africa (+56%) and the Middle East (+13%). The overseas operations are a significant contributor to the group, hedging against the uncertainties of the UK economy and diluting the impact of raw material inflation, currently affecting the food and drink industry in the UK.

Sales of soft drinks on dispense increased by 8%, largely as a result of the acquisition of the Ben Shaws dispense business in January 2010. Nichols has now announced that it is strengthening its dispense business by acquiring the remaining 50% stake in Dayla Liquid Packing (Dayla).

“2010 was another outstanding year, despite the difficult economic environment,” says John Nichols, non-executive chairman of Nichols. “We made excellent progress and were well ahead of 2009, which was also a record year for us and therefore a tough target to beat. In a challenging consumer market, once again we have delivered double digit growth in volume, revenue and profitability. We remain confident in producing further profitable growth in 2011 and beyond.”

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