Business Reporter
Listed spirits and wines producer, African Distillers (Afdis), saw a bump in sales volumes over its first quarter to June 30, 2021 despite the continued influx of cheap imports.

The group’s sales volumes were boosted by the wines and ready-to-drink segments, which both more than doubled during the period under review.

Afdis’ spirits volumes was also up, but at comparably lower levels.

Afdis manufactures, distributes and markets branded wines and spirits and ciders locally. The spirits segment volumes were boosted by improving uptake of a recently introduced brand – the Gold Blend Number 9.

“The company registered a volume growth of 56 percent for the quarter over the same period last year owing to improved access to the market.

“Spirit volume grew by 17 percent over prior year benefiting from the good performance of brown spirits. Widespread market acceptance of the newly introduced Gold Blend Number 9 contributed to this growth,” reported management in a Q1 trading update.

“The business, however, continued to witness the influx of cheap and illicit spirits in small packs from several producers in the market.

“Wines and Ready to Drink (RTD) volumes grew 113 percent and 116 percent respectively, riding on improved availability in the quarter.”

The impact of the improved volumes also extended to the company’s financial performance as revenues increased.

Said Afdis: “Revenue for the first quarter increased by 38 percent in inflation adjusted terms, whilst in historic terms it grew by 228 percent.

“Revenue growth was due to firm demand for the company’s products, which resulted in higher volumes.”

The group says it is still monitoring the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic as Zimbabwe is currently dealing with a “third wave.”

Zimbabwe is currently in the midst of a third wave, with official figures showing that the country had recorded 85 732 cases and 2 697 deaths as at July 19, 2021.

“The country is currently experiencing a third wave of Covid-19 infections and the full impact of the pandemic remains uncertain.

“The company continues to implement all necessary mitigatory measures in line with Government and World Health Organisation (WHO) protocols aimed at promoting the health and safety of employees and stakeholders during this pandemic.”

During FY2020, Afdis became a subsidiary of beverages giant, Delta Corporation after the latter gained a controlling stake in Afdis following the acquisition additional shares during the past financial year.

To that extent, Afdis’ financial year has changed from June 30 to March 31 to align with that of the new parent company.

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