British American Tobacco’s cigarette volumes during the nine months to the end of September, at 495 billion, were down by about 1.2 percent on those of the nine months to the end of September 2013.
According to an interim management statement posted on the company’s website, volumes were increased in the company’s Asia-Pacific region by about 0.7 percent to 150 billion, and were steady in its EEMEA (Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa) region, at 168 billion.
But volumes were down in the Americas by about 2.1 percent to 95 billion, and down in Western Europe by about 5.7 percent to 82 billion.
Total tobacco volumes, incorporating OTPs calculated as stick-equivalents, were down by about 1.1 percent to 515 billion.
BAT reported that its volumes had grown in many markets, including those in countries of the Middle East, Bangladesh, Venezuela, Pakistan, Ukraine, Turkey and Indonesia, but had been more than offset by lower volumes in Russia, Vietnam, Brazil, Poland and Canada, mainly driven by industry declines.
Volume cigarette sales were said to have increased by 6.2 percent in respect of the company’s five Global Drive Brands, whose combined market share had continued to grow strongly in key markets. Dunhill’s volume increased by 3.5 percent, with good growth in Indonesia, Brazil and South Korea partially offset by a market decline in Malaysia. Kent’s volume decreased by 2.7 percent mainly due to market contraction in Russia and Romania, partially offset by good growth in countries of the Middle East and in Japan.
Lucky Strike’s volume was said to have been down slightly, with increases in Mexico, Russia and Spain more than offset by decreases in Chile and Poland. Pall Mall’s volume was up by 7.7 percent as a result of growth in Pakistan, South Africa, Chile, Mexico, Argentina and Poland, partially offset by declines in Italy, Russia and the UK. Rothmans’ volumes grew by 37.0 percent with strong performances in Russia, Italy, Ukraine and the UK, slightly offset by a decline in Egypt.
Fine Cut volume continued to grow, up by 0.3 percent, with good performances in Hungary, Germany and Belgium. Both Pall Mall and Lucky Strike fine cut grew volume. Pall Mall remains the leading fine cut brand in Western Europe.
Group revenue for the nine months to the end of September, at constant rates of exchange, grew by 2.4 percent on that of the nine months to the end of September 2013, while group revenue at current exchange rates fell by 9.6 percent.
“The Group grew revenue at constant rates of exchange as a result of a slightly better price mix, despite increased competitive pricing activity in some of our key markets,” said chief executive, Nicandro Durante.
“Our volume performance reflects our broad geographic spread, increased market share and excellent growth of our Global Drive Brands.
“Although currency movements impacted our reported results, the Group continues to perform well and we are on track to deliver another year of good earnings growth at constant rates of exchange.”