KBL shrugs off lockdown hangover

Kabelo Adamson
BOUNCING BACK: Kgalagadi Breweries Limited

Local brewery company, Kgalagadi Breweries Limited (KBL) are in the mood to pop champagne after beating-off the after affects of several prolonged alcohol bans to register a 32 percent increase in profits.

KBL, a subsidiary of Sechaba Brewery Holdings Limited (SBHL), recorded a profit after tax of P316 million for the year ended 31 December 2021, a vast improvement from the P239.5m pocketed the previous year.

KBL, together with Coca Cola Beverages Botswana (CCBB), are the two associates of the publically listed SBHL.

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With Covid-19 causing death and disruption for much of the last two years, alcohol sales have been hard hit, with persistent booze bans introduced in a bid to control the spread of the virus.

However, with the most recent ban lifted at the start of September last year, the alcohol industry has bounced back in style. A bumper Christmas period helped KBL increase its volumes for the year by 5 percent.

“The Government of Botswana’s economic response plan and the vaccination roll out programme, have contributed positively to the improvement in associates’ performance. More than 80 percent of the population eligible for vaccination was vaccinated,” stated Sechaba Managing Director, Faith Nteta.

The return to normal operating hours for restaurants and related outlets that trade in alcohol also aided the business’ recovery and enhanced performance.

“The associates’ continue to contribute to efforts in supporting the health system’s ability to deal with Covid-19 and protecting the economy,” noted Nteta.

Despite the current unpredictability and the economic uncertainty surrounding the on-going pandemic, Nteta said the beverage industry is showing real pockets of resilience.

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“The company believes that there is sufficient liquidity to sustain operations for the next 12 months and beyond,” she reported.

CCBB, meanwhile, saw its profit after tax rise by 28 percent, fizzing up from P102 million in 2020 to P130.5 million last year.

KBL and CCBB combined volumes increased by 11 percent with their holding company registering a profit after tax of P200 million, from P155 million.

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