Carlsberg Signals Beer Slump in Western Europe is Moderating

Carlsberg A/S said the slump in western European beer sales has moderated, sending the Danish Tuborg brewer’s shares up as much as 5.4%.

While revenue dropped 15% in the second quarter, the period showed gradual improvement in Europe, the Danish brewer said Friday. Business in China rebounded strongly.

The brewer also said that first-half operating profit declined 8.9% and that the outlook for summer beer sales is uncertain as the Covid-19 outbreak expands in Russia, one of its largest markets. Carlsberg said it’s being buffeted by lower prices, because beer sold at retail locations has lower prices usually than at the bar.

Carlsberg said so far its business in eastern Europe has been shielded by its limited exposure to the bar and restaurant market there.

“Although government lockdowns are gradually being lifted, the sales development across our regions in the coming months continues to be volatile and uncertain, not least during the important summer months,” the brewer said. “Consequently, the 2020 guidance remains suspended.”

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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