ThaiBev to intensify Vietnam focus after lackluster 3Q

By Dat Nguyen   August 17, 2018 | 03:22 am PT
ThaiBev to intensify Vietnam focus after lackluster 3Q
Bottles of Sabeco's Saigon Special beer are seen at a restaurant bar in Hanoi. Photo by Reuters/Huy Kham
Thai Beverage on Wednesday announced plans to double down on the Vietnam beer market after posting disappointing third-quarter results.

It said it will focus on optimal use of its 54 percent stake in Vietnam's largest brewery Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage Corp (Sabeco), known for its Saigon Special beer.

Singapore-based The StraitsTimes reports that although the firm acquired its stake in Sabeco last December, ThaiBev only began conducting due diligence of the brewery's production facilities recently, after its current CEO, Bennett Neo Gim Siong, was appointed on August 1.

The firm stated it was working on several areas to boost Sabeco’s performance, including procurement, marketing and R&D.

ThaiBev officials said they were optimistic about Sabeco’s potential and profitability in Vietnam’s beer market.

The latest announcement came after ThaiBev on Tuesday posted a net profit of 5.99 billion baht ($180 million) for the third quarter ending June 30, a 61 percent fall from 15.23 billion baht ($458 million) a year ago.

The drop was attributed to several factors, one of them an increase in net losses from the non-alcoholic beverage business.

Last year, Sabeco produced nearly 1.8 trillion litres of beer, recording sales of VND35.2 trillion ($1.56 billion) and an after-tax profit of VND4.95 trillion ($199.5 million).

It exported 28.6 million liters of beer for over $15 million.

Vietnam is the biggest beer market in Southeast Asia, consuming nearly four billion liters last year.

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