Jane Karuku
EABL CEO Jane Karuku. [Photo/ Courtesy]

East African Breweries PLC (EABL) has reported Ksh54.9 billion in net sales for the half-year ended December 31, 2021, representing a 23 percent growth compared to the same period last year.

The continued investment in capacity of Ksh6.2 billion enabled EABL to rapidly respond to the increased consumer demand.

Consequently, the Group’s profit after tax grew 131 percent to Ksh8.7 billion, primarily driven by the higher net sales, margin expansion, robust cost management and the re-opening of bars in Kenya in the second quarter. EABL has reported the best interim profit after tax in the last five years.

“During this pandemic, our strategic clarity enabled us to maintain focus on brand building, active portfolio management, consumer led innovation, and digital transformation, all executed through extra-ordinary efforts and resilience of our people,” said EABL Managing  Director Jane Karuku.

In Kenya, net sales increased 27 percent primarily due to accelerated strategic investment behind brands and  the re-opening of bars in the second quarter further improved the net sales growth.

In Uganda, net sales grew 18 percent driven by the market’s agile response to the shifting consumer trends as well as strategic pricing decisions.

In Tanzania, net  sales  grew  15 percent,  with  beer  and  spirits  registering  double-digit  growth momentum continued through increased strategic investment behind brands and innovations.

“We continue to focus on Spirit of Progress, our 10-year sustainability programme. This is a three-pronged agenda aimed at promoting positive drinking, championing diversity and  inclusion and pioneering grain to glass sustainability across our value chain,” said Ms Karuku.

“Our regional effort to support the hospitality sector through the pandemic has gathered pace, with 60% of the Raise the Bar fund (Kshs 570 million) already spent. This fund is enabling physical and digital support to bars welcoming customers back after lockdowns. EABL has also complemented government efforts across the region in driving national programmes to combat the impact of COVID-19, vaccinating our employees, their families, and consumers.”

The Board has recommended an interim dividend of Ksh3.75 per share.

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