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Carlsberg, 2020 sales drop of 8.4%

The Group estimates a growth in operating profit in 2021 between 3% and 10%

The Carlsberg Group has disclosed the financial results for the full year ended December 31, 2020. Overall, organic revenues reported a -8.4% amounting to 58,541 million Danish crowns. The total organic volume recorded a -3.8%. Specifically, these are the volumes of references: Tuborg volume -9%, Carlsberg -10%, 1664 Blanc + 8%, Grimbergen -2% and Somersby + 2%. Volume growth in the craft and specialty sector of 1% and alcohol-free beer volume growth of 11%. Organic operating profit amounted to -3.1%. An improvement in the operating margin of + 70 basis points to 16.6% was recorded. Adjusted net profit increased by 3.3% to Dkk 6,363 million. Financial data show adjusted earnings per share up 6.3% to Dkk 43.6. Free cash flow, including brand rights and acquisitions, was DKK 5,057 million.

The Group has carried out several mergers and acquisitions: Marston's in the UK, Wernesgrüner in Germany, the Brooklyn brand rights and asset restructuring in China. The supervisory board will propose to the general meeting a 5% increase in the dividend to 22.0 Dkk per share. During 2020, the company repurchased shares for an amount of Dkk 2.9 billion. Today, the company will launch a new treasury share buyback program of Dkk 750m, which will run until 23 April. Organic growth of operating profit of between 3% and 10% is expected in 2021.

CEO Cees' t Hart said: "The financial situation of the Group remains strong. Despite Covid-19, we have improved our operating margin, recorded a strong cash flow, increased the dividend per share, completed a substantial program, share repurchase and strengthened business through acquisitions. We are pleased that the supervisory board will propose a further dividend increase for 2020, and will initiate a new share buyback program".

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