Premium mixers firm Fever-Tree believes that it is 'well-positioned' to take advantage of the reopening of the hospitality sector, particularly in its home market of the UK, which represented about 50% of its revenue pre-COVID.
In a trading update to coincide with its AGM, Fever-Tree said that while it ' remains too early to predict the pace' of the on-trade recovery this year, the company's 'brand strength, distribution footprint and strong relationships with our customers means we are well positioned to take advantage of the return of this important channel'.
Ahead Of Expectations
In the off-trade, meanwhile, Fever-Tree has performed ahead of expectations, with the company reporting that off-trade sales have 'remained strong' in the first four months of the year.
'While we would expect some of this demand to switch to the on-trade as restrictions ease further, it is clear that at-home consumption of long mixed drinks is becoming increasingly established, supported by both the retailers and spirit companies,' it said.
UK off-trade sales in the 13-week period to 18 April were up 10.1% year-on-year, despite tough comparatives as the trading period lapped the start of the first lockdown in March 2020.
The performance was 'ahead of the total mixer category', the group said, which indicates the 'strength of the brand', as well as the success of new flavours and formats launched last year, as well as its marketing campaign.
Outside The UK
In the US, where the on-trade has been re-opening on a state by state basis Fever-Tree said that it has secured a number of new national accounts, which 'positions us well within this channel as it continues to reopen during 2021 and beyond'.
Off-trade sales in the US were up 38.2% in the 12 weeks to 27 March, it said.
In Europe, the company said that 'confidence is improving', despite prolonged lockdowns in many markets, while in its Rest of World division, the group is continuing to 'build on the strong progress' it has made in markets like Australia and Canada.