Irn Bru maker AG Barr bolsters £50m balance sheet

Friday, April 2, 2021

Irn-Bru maker AG Barr saw its sales and profits plummet after the damaging effects of the Coronavirus pandemic on the hospitality industry.

The soft drinks group, which has headquarters in Cumbernauld, reported pre-tax profits for the year to January 24 of 30.5 per cent, down to £26m, while sales fell by 11.2 per cent to £227m.

Executive director Roger White said that despite AG Barr,"we closed the year in strong financial health, with our brands and business poised for growth on a like for like basis, and with the clear intention to recommence dividend payments in 2021.

The group, which also produces Rubicon, said the restrictions since December, combined with the expiry of its Rockstar Energy Drinks sales and marketing deal in October, drove revenues down 14.6 percent in the second half.

Julie Palmer, partner with corporate rescue specialist Begbies Traynor, said: "AG Barr has been going through some tough times...However, the brand is one of the many looking forward to the reopening of offices and the hospitality sector to increase the sales it makes from the lunchtime trade."

AG Barr kept dividends on hold after pausing last April, but said it maintained "an obligation" to boost shareholder dividends in the current 2021-22 financial year.

AG Barr said the Funkin brand was benefiting from the trend of Brits including UK residents drinking cocktails at home, which boosted demand for their Funkin pre-made cocktails.

It also invests in the growing energy drink market, recently launched Rubsymbol RAW Energy, and boosts sales of Its Irn-Bru Energy brand.