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Coca Cola recorded highest ever volume and comparable EBIT in 2019

Coca-Cola HBC AG (LON:CCH), a leading bottler of The Coca-Cola Company, today reported its financial results for the full year ended 31 December 2019.

Full-year highlights

·      Solid full-year FX-neutral revenue growth of 4.4% (+3.7% excluding the Bambi acquisition1); Strong Q4 revenue growth (+7.4% FX-neutral, +6.0% excluding Bambi) partially offset the impact of poor weather in Q2 and Q3

·      All market segments delivered full-year FX-neutral revenue growth:

o  Established: +1.3%; ongoing strong performance in Italy

o  Developing: +4.2%; broad-based acceleration in volumes in Q4

o  Emerging: + 7.1%; Nigerian share gains and +24% volumes in Q4

o  The discontinuation of Lavazza had a negative impact of 20bps on full-year growth

·      Full year volume +3.3%; volume accelerated in all segments in Q4

·      Sparkling volumes +3.5% with growth in all segments; low/no sugar +26.7% and Adult Sparkling +7.1% 

·      Innovation drove 4.2 percentage points of volume growth

·      FX-neutral revenue per case +1.0%; +2.1% excluding Nigeria where we invested in pricing

·      Comparable EBIT +11.5% (+9.5% excluding Bambi): Comparable EBIT margin +60 basis points to 10.8% (+50bps excluding Bambi)

·      Comparable EPS +10.0% to €1.436; basic EPS +10.2% to €1.340

·      Free cash flow +19.6% to €442.6million with capex at 6.9% of revenue

·      The Board of Directors proposes an ordinary dividend of €0.62 per share, an 8.8% increase on 2018

Conference call

Coca-Cola HBC will host a conference call for financial analysts and investors to discuss the 2019 full-year financial results on 13 February 2020 at 10:30 am, Swiss time (9:30 am London, 11:30 am Athens, and 4:30 am New York time). Interested parties can access the live, audio webcast of the call through Coca-Cola HBC’s website (http://coca-colahellenic.com/en/investors/).

Zoran Bogdanovic, Chief Executive Officer of Coca-Cola HBC AG, commented:

“2019 was another year of strong growth with the business recording its highest ever volume and comparable EBIT. I am particularly pleased with how we finished the year, following the unseasonable weather we faced in Q2 and Q3. We drove growth across all three market segments as well as in our three largest markets of Russia, Italy and Nigeria. Our core sparkling category continues to grow, supported by momentum in low- and no-sugar variants and we continue to gain or maintain share in the majority of our markets. We were recognised by the Dow Jones Sustainability Index as Europe’s most sustainable beverage company for the sixth time in seven years. We enter 2020 with considerable momentum and exciting plans that include the roll-out of Costa Coffee in at least 10 of our markets. We are confident that we are well on track to deliver our 2020 commitments and to make solid progress on our 2025 growth agenda.”

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