Full-year revenue growth for Molson Coors

Molson Coors

Molson Coors Beverage Co has posted full-year revenue growth in 2021, led by growth of its biggest brands, a sales rebound in bars, restaurants and at events, and a continued shift into higher-priced, above-premium beverages.

Molson Coors has achieved double-digit revenue and profit growth in its fiscal fourth-quarter — the second consecutive quarter it has posted both top-and bottom-line gains versus the year-ago quarter — and issued guidance for 2022 projecting both top-line and bottom-line growth for the year. The achievement marks the first time in more than a decade the company has grown revenues and profits for a full fiscal year.

“Today our top line is growing for the first time in ten years, our core brands are growing net sales revenue for the first time in years, our portfolio is premiumizing to levels never before achieved, we are moving to scale beyond beer, and our business is making tangible progress toward achieving the goals of our revitalisation plan,” Molson Coors CEO Gavin Hattersley said in a morning call with analysts and investors. “We are set up for a strong 2022.”

Full-year net sales revenue rose 6.5% to $10.28 billion, up from $9.65 billion in 2020. The company reported 2021 net income of $1.01 billion, or $4.62 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $949 million, or $4.38 per diluted share, in 2020.

Molson Coors’ 2021 gains came despite another turbulent in the beverage industry, which included the double-punch of a snarled global supply chain and significant inflation, which resulted in soaring prices for transportation and key raw materials. The year also was marred by persistent issues wrought by the global pandemic, which resulted in a fourth-quarter pullback and renewed restrictions amid the rapid spread of the omicron variant in key markets.

“That impacted our business, creating a whole host of challenges,” Hattersley said. “And yet, through it all, Molson Coors made tremendous progress. Molson Coors finished 2021 as a healthier business than we were at the end of 2019.”

New and trusted brands taking off

The company’s two top-selling brands each grew net sales revenue globally, with a particularly strong performance in the US, where Coors Light finished the year up 4.4% and Miller Lite up 7.6%. In Canada, Molson Coors’ second-largest market, Coors Light reported revenue growth in the fourth quarter while Miller Lite accelerated its growth in the fourth quarter to finish 2021 up double digits.

Molson Coors finished 2021 with above-premium beverages comprising the largest percentage of sales in the company’s history, fueled by growth in hard seltzers in the US and Canada and beer innovations in the U.K. and Central and Eastern Europe.

In the US, the company boasted the fastest-growing hard seltzer portfolio among major beverage companies, posting triple-digit growth in 2021, per data from market research firm IRI. Its two entries, Vizzy and Topo Chico Hard Seltzer, each rank in the top five hard seltzer brands in the country and continue to grow quarter after quarter, Hattersley said.

Molson Coors is particularly confident on Topo Chico Hard Seltzer, which launched nationwide in January. With momentum in both established and new markets, and more innovation on the way, the company thinks the brand can become a top-3 hard seltzer in the competitive U.S. market. 12-packs of the brand’s newest entry, Topo Chico Ranch Water, are now the fastest-turning ranch water in the U.S.

Molson Coors made significant strides in its effort to transform into a modern beverage company in 2021, led by the performance of its beyond beer portfolio, particularly the runaway success of ZOA, the fastest-growing energy drink the U.S., per IRI.

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