Belfast Telegraph

Company Snapshot: Diageo Northern Ireland Ltd.

Tough market fails to take the fizz out of drinks group figures

Diageo Northern Ireland is a wholly owned subsidiary of Diageo plc, formerly known as Guinness.

The local company is a commercial vehicle for the sale of alcoholic and other beverages, both purchased from, and sold through, other Diageo subsidiaries or linked businesses.

The Diageo group was reorganised some years ago to incorporate the turnover of Diageo Global Supply, formerly known as the Irish Bonding Co.

Annual turnover in Diageo NI has varied only slightly in the last five years. After reaching a peak of £178m in 2006-7, turnover fell in the following year by nearly 4% and more recently has recovered to reach nearly £180m in 2009-10.

The impact of the downturn in business was reflected in the operating and pre-tax profits and losses as recorded in 2009-10. Although, by value, turnover was 1% higher in 2009-10, the company reports that, by volume, it decreased by 1%. The company describes the most recent reported year as offering difficult market conditions.

Draught beer sales were down by 1.7% in a market where there was an overall reduction of 4.7%.

Sales of packaged beer increased by 2.3%, which may indicate a shift from bar sales to off-licence business. A further feature assessed by the company is that sales of spirits decreased by 2.3%. 2009-10 was a year when there was a significant level of crossborder trade in the sales of wine which are reported to have produced a strong performance.