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Top Beverage Companies in terms of Growth & Profitability

Floris van der Pijl published on October 21, 2022

Our trend report on the beverage industry showed that over the period 2017-2021, the beverage industry realized an average annual growth rate of 4.5%. Besides achieving growth, the sector was also profitable. With an average profitability of 6.1%, the sector as a whole is healthy. Who are the top beverage companies driving this growth and profitability? Read it below.

Fast growing beverage companies

In our trend report, we analyzed the data from the world's 700 largest beverage companies (net sales of €50 million and more). Below you find 5 hand picked top beverage companies in terms of growth.

# Company Product Net Sales 2021 (Mln) % Growth
2020-2021
1 Champagnerie Piper Heidsieck Champagne €133.5 67%
2 Tenute Piccini Wine €101.5 61%
3 MGP Ingredients Other ingredients €522.5  59%
4 The Endrington Group Liquor €1,159.1 57%
5 Hebei Yangyuan Zhihui Beverage Co. Liquor €957.1 56%

1. Champagnerie Piper Heidsieck

Champagnerie Piper Heidsieck made a very strong recovery after COVID. The company probably benefited from its position in China. The brand became popular due to the company's red label, the color that represents luck. China imported 180 million bottles of champagne in 2021, 15.1% more than in 2020.

2. Tenute Piccini

In 2021, Tenute Piccini was able to benefit from increased efforts outside Italy. Through COVID, the Tuscan wine company managed to diversify its channel mix - which it benefited from after demand normalized. In addition, the company started to see the importance of e-commerce.

3. MGP Ingredients

MGP Ingredients is both a liquor and ingredient solutions company. In 2021, the company grew significantly with the acquisition of spirits/liquor company Luxco, adding $180 million in annual sales.

4. The Edrington Group

With well-known brands such as The Famous Grouse, Macallan & Highland Park, the Scottish Wishkey company was able to recover strongly after COVID. The company states that all businesses combined were able to benefit from the reopening of hospitality and travel.

5. Hebei Yangyuan Zhihui Beverage

Hebei Yangyuan Zhihui Beverage focuses on plant-based dairy alternative products. You would expect a thriving business, especially in the top line. However, the walnut company has had several struggles in recent years, with lawsuits from consumers over the content of its product. In 2021, the company showed a strong rebound, and time will tell if they can sustain this growth.

Most profitable beverage companies

Besides net sales, we also analyzed the profitability of these 700 beverage companies. Below you find 5 hand picked top beverage companies in terms of profitability.

# Company Product % EBIT 2021

Avg.
2017-2021

1 Kweichow Moutai Liquor 67.4% 66.4%
2 Luzhou LaoJiao Liquor 48.9% 39.9%
3 Wuliangye Yibin Liquor 46.4%  44.5%
4 Societe Jas Hennessy Liquor 43.5% 40.5%
5 Champagne Louis Roederer Champagne 40.2% 39.5%

1. Kweichow Moutai

Kweichow Moutai is a Chinese company that sells Baijiu, a liquor made popular by its public appearances in politics. With a price starting at $205 per 500 ml, it is no wonder that the company realizes very high margins averaging 66.4% (2017-2021). Despite the price, the drink is so popular that Kweichow Moutai has a market cap of more than $400 billion. This is more than Nike and Coca-Cola combined.

2. Luzhou LaoJiao

Luzhou Laojiao is a Chinese liquor distilled from fermented sorghum and is a baijiu of the "strong aroma" class. The brand is considered less of a premium brand and compared to Kweichow Moutai, their price premium and profitability are significantly lower.

3. Wuliangye Yibin

Wuliangye ('Five Grains Liquid') is a Chinese baijiu liquor made from proso millet, maize, glutinous rice, long-grain rice and wheat. The formula was already developed during the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) and was given the name Wuliangye in 1905. As Luzhou LaoJiao, Wuliangye Yibin is less of a premium brand than Kweichow Moutai and the price premium and profitability are significantly lower.

4. Societe Jas Hennessy

Societe Jas Hennessy is famous for its premium Hennessy cognac. With a 46% market share by 2021 in the global cognac category, the company is the clear market leader. The company sells more than 100 million bottles of cognac annually and has the perfect combination of scale and brand premium to achieve one of the highest margins in the beverage industry.

5. Champagne Louis Roederer

Louis Roederer is not only one of the oldest champagne houses in the world, it is also the most profitable champagne company within the dataset.

 

More on the Beverage Industry

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Floris van der Pijl

Associate / floris.van.der.pijl@a-insights.eu