High Cost Of Living: How Many Nigerians Struggle To Afford Beer

February 20, 2024
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Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Breweries Plc, Hans Essaadi, has revealed that the economic situation in Nigeria is so bad that citizens can no longer afford to buy beer.

He said this on Monday, February 19 at the company’s investor call following the release of its 2023 results.

“It has been an unprecedented year for our business in Nigeria. We saw a significant decline in the mainstream lager market as a result of Nigerian consumers no longer able to afford a Goldberg after a hard day’s work,” Essaadi told Bloomberg.

NB suffered a N153bn foreign exchange loss due to the devaluation of the naira for the year ended December 2023.

For the period under review, NB grew its revenue by 8.9 per cent to N599.64bn from N550.64bn. Net finance expense rose significantly by 449.7 per cent to N189.19bn, dragging the brewer to a loss of N106.31bn, from a gain of N13.19bn at the end of 2022.

While reacting to the financial results, the NB Board of Directors said;

“The Nigeria business landscape experienced significant shifts in 2023 with substantial impact on businesses and livelihoods nationwide. The redesign of the naira notes which resulted in cash shortage that severely hampered social and economic activitIies nationwide set the tone for a turbulent year.

“High double-digit inflation rates (with food inflation at more than 30 per cent), removal of subsidy on premium motor spirit (fuel), devaluation of the naira, and foreign exchange scarcity further exacerbated the already difficult environment for the populace and businesses.”

“The company was able to grow its revenue by nine per cent compared to the previous year aided by a positive price mix. However, the operating profit fell by 15 per cent due to higher input cost and one-off reorganisation costs despite strong and aggressive cost savings and other efficiency measures. Coupled with the impact of the devaluation of the naira which resulted in a foreign exchange loss of N153bn, the Company recorded a net loss of N106 billion during the year.”

NB produces alcoholic products like Star Lager, Gulder, Legend Extra Stout, Heineken, Goldberg, Life, and Star Radler.

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