Carlsberg Lifts Forecast as Sales Rebound After Lockdowns

Carlsberg A/S raised its forecast for full-year earnings after beer sales bounced back faster than expected following the easing of coronavirus lockdowns.

The Danish brewer now expects organic operating profit to decline by a mid-single-digit percentage. Previously it forecast a drop in the high single digits.

Beer sales were stronger than expected in the third quarter, the company said Tuesday in a statement, with “positive volume development” in Russia and China at the start of the current three months. Carlsberg’s Baltika Breweries vies for dominance in Russia with a local subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch InBev.

Carlsberg has also been cutting costs, making up for continued uncertainty over the western European market as the virus surges anew.

The company reported total organic volume growth of 2.4% for the third quarter.

The new forecast marks a second upward revision. The brewer said last month that profit would drop less than a previously anticipated 10% to 15% decline this year after a warm August and the easing of lockdown restrictions in some markets drove beer sales.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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