New CEO Appointment Should Help C&C Achieve Further Growth, Says Analyst

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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New CEO Appointment Should Help C&C Achieve Further Growth, Says Analyst

The appointment of David Forde as the new chief executive of drinks firm C&C Group should enable the business to capitalise on further growth opportunities, a leading analyst has said.

Greg Johnson of Shore Capital was commenting following the announcement that Forde, the current managing director of Heineken UK, will be joining the business as CEO in early 2021.

'Strong Endorsement'

Forde's appointment, along with the appointment of Patrick McMahon as chief financial officer, are a 'strong endorsement' of the Tennent's and Magners maker, Johnson wrote in a briefing note.

'Although a tumultuous period for the industry, Mr Forde is joining C&C at an exciting time,' he said.

'Supported by its fabric brands, strong balance sheet and market leading distribution capabilities we see the opportunity for C&C to broaden its brand portfolio and gain share in distribution, which over time should lead to incremental earnings and a re-rating towards its beverage peers.


'We continue to view C&C as a unique way of playing the post-lockdown UK on-trade market.'

Elsewhere, commenting on Forde's appointment, analyst Cathal Kenny of Davy said that he 'brings highly relevant supply-chain experience and leadership to the group'.

Reallocating Resources

Back in June, C&C Group said that it was reallocating resources to its off-trade business, due to a 'significant increase in demand' in this channel due to the coronavirus epidemic.

The group posted a 16% decline in volumes for its Bulmers brand in April and May, it said, while Tennent's was down 42% in Scotland, the group said.


In the full-year to 29 February, however, C&C Group said that net revenue was up 7.8% to €1.72 billion, while operating profit was up 10.4%.

Commenting on Forde's appointment earlier this week, Stewart Gilliland, interim executive chairman at C&C Group said, "Following a thorough evaluation of exceptional candidates for the position, we believe David has the requisite blend of brands, distribution and pub sector expertise to maximise the potential of our iconic brands and optimise the potential of our distribution capabilities."

© 2020 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.

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