British soft drinks company Britvic is the UK's #2 soft drinks company after Coca-Cola. It is the exclusive local licensee for PepsiCo, manufacturing and distributing all of that company's products under long-term contract, and it also markets a sizeable portfolio of of its own brands including Robinsons - the UK's #1 non-carbonated soft drink, now marketed in multiple different variants including kids RTD Fruit Shoot - Tango, J20 mixers, Purdey's and Ballygowan mineral water. A key strength is Britvic's "on-trade" distribution network, which supplies pubs and restaurants, and now generates almost three-quarters of gross revenues. Pepsi, Britvic-brand juices and R Whites are three of the top five soft drinks sold through licensed premises. This is the legacy of Britvic's origins as a joint venture combining the soft drinks divisions of several large breweries. In fact, Britvic's development was hampered by many years by the conflicting interests of its shareholders Bass (now InterContinental Hotels Group), Whitbread and Allied Domecq as well as PepsiCo. Britvic finally issued an IPO in 2005 and has prospered since gaining its independence, until a serious stumble in the summer of 2012. That prompted an agreement to merge with smaller Scottish rival AG Barr, makers of Irn-Bru and Tizer. The deal was delayed by a referral to competition regulators, and by the time it was cleared in summer 2013, Britvic had regained its poise. The merger was called off soon afterwards. Revenues peaked at almost £1.6 in the year to Nov 2019 before slipping back in ye 2020 to £1.4bn. A key factor was the impact of the Covid pandemic on on-trade sales. Net profit was £94.5m. Simon Litherland is group CEO. The UK accounts for two-thirds of sales; France, Ireland and Brazil are increasingly important international growth markets. Britvic markets three soft drinks in Brazil, now its second largest market by revenues: Maguary, Dafruta and Bela Ischia. Its main brand in France is Teisseire. International brands now feature a similar range of formats and sub-brands: for example Maguary Fruit Shoot and Teisseire Fruit Shoot. In perhaps the most unusual addition to its portfolio, Britvic in 2020 acquired the Boiling Tap Company, a maker of boiling, chilled and sparkling water taps for commercial customers. It now trades as Aqua Libra.
Capsule checked 13th April 2021
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Historical profile information for Britvic
Adbrands Daily Update 4th May 2021: Soft drinks company Britvic made a comparatively rare acquisition, adding juice business Plenish for an undisclosed sum. The company makes a range of plant-based juices and shots, nut milks and juices cleansers. Founder Kara Rosen will remain with the business to oversee operations.
Adbrands Weekly Update 20th Jul 2017: UK soft drinks company Britvic reallocated brands previously managed by BBH to two separate agencies. Saatchi & Saatchi London won the kids' portfolio led by Robinson's, but adult drinks including J20 juices were awarded to VCCP.
Adbrands Weekly Update 16th April 2015: Ads of the Week "They Grow Up Fast". A clever idea from BBH London for long-established UK family favourite Robinsons. There's a little part of us which feels that the idea is perhaps a little better than the execution. Maybe we're being over-critical? But we definitely prefer Chairman Of The Board singer General Johnson's voice to that of those sweaty and insufficiently amazed parents.
Adbrands Weekly Update 3rd Apr 2014: Industry watcher Beverage Digest published a gloomy analysis of the US liquid refreshment (LRB) market, saying that "challenging recent trends... continued and worsened in 2013". There were no such problems in the UK, according to the latest annual soft drinks report from Britvic, the local Pepsi licensee. Last year's summer heatwave pushed consumption to record levels. Volumes were up almost 2%, but the growing number of premium-priced products pushed up value, especially in the take-home market, by almost 4%. Total value topped £10bn for the first time. Grocery and convenience store channels accounted for sales of £7.5bn, with another £2.9bn from on-trade pubs and clubs. Cola was still the biggest seller, accounting for almost 22% of the retail market and 43% of on-trade. Juice and energy drinks were as usual the #2 and #3 take-home categories by value, but the most spectacular growth was seen in "cold hot drinks" like iced tea and coffee, with sales jumping by 47% year-on-year. Coca-Cola continues to dominate the local market with 30% overall share to 20% for Britvic.
Adbrands Weekly Update 31st Dec 2013: UK soft drinks company Britvic named former Diageo marketer Matt Barwell as chief marketing officer. He succeeds Simon Stewart, now managing director, international.
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