– We ate in the south – E24

- We ate in the south - E24

The northernmost brewery in the world continued its growth in 2021 and its sales volume increased by more than 25 million over the record year 2020.

Growth: Mack Ølbryggerier CEO Roger Carlsen says 2021 was actually a better year than 2020.
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In 2020, the volume of the Norwegian beer market increased by 27.5 percent, while the MAC increased its turnover by a whopping 47.1 percent. This resulted in record years and the ringing of coins in the vaults.

Despite some dip in profits, 2021 was also a strong year for the brewery.

– The decline in results was actually as expected. The most important thing is continued rotation. The cost picture was artificially low in 2020, so if we look a bit beyond the numbers, 2021 was actually a better year than 2020, says managing director Roger Carlsen.

2021 2020 2019
Enter 372,978,000 346491000 323,882,000
costs 330145000 293953000 338247000
net financing – 7,187,000 – 12355000 – 12297000
Annual result 27,054000 42813000 – 31662000

The first half of 2021 held promises of big money, but problems in the latter half of the year affected the bottom line.

The first half of 2021 was very good, but the growth in the past six months has not been able to maintain the same level. Shortages in raw materials, particularly in box-shaped packaging, mean we were unable to deliver the quantity our customers wanted before adding:

– But despite this, we are very satisfied with the whole year.

Uncomfortably high

Like most other industries, the beer industry has also experienced a rise in prices as a result of the war in Ukraine. In addition, the after-effects of the Corona epidemic are still being felt.

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– If we talk a little bit about 2022, we see that we are relatively strongly affected by the imbalance that exists in the world today. The price of many commodities that are part of our production and value chain has risen dramatically. This applies to gas, aluminium, wheat, plastic, and not least shipping. Carlsen says cost growth in 2022 is uncomfortably high.

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Take the cost yourself

Unlike other goods where consumers are happy to pay a large percentage of the bill that the increased costs necessitate, the brewery instead bears most of the cost itself.

Ideally, we should have been able to increase our top streak enough to offset the increase in costs. But when that doesn’t become possible, we’d rather bear a larger portion of the cost ourselves than pay it to consumers, Carlsen explains.

How do you deal with high prices?

Unfortunately, there is not much we can do in the short term. For example, we can’t just put beer in new cans, and we generally just enjoy the structure we’re in now, says Carlsen.


– But we are working hard to improve other aspects, such as our sustainability elements. We are working on, among other things, reusing Co2 that occur in production. We want to be able to make the most of raw materials, and work with different solutions within that. But these are long-term projects and will not have an impact now.

The pandemic has naturally caused a change in the drinking habits of Norwegians. People went to the store instead of the bar to get a pint on the much-awaited Friday. According to Carlsen, this has stabilized as a result of the opening up of nightlife. But that’s without the department store’s market share declining.

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– We are still market leaders in the north, but we continue to eat at the market in southern Norway, that is, from Trondheim and further south. In both the nightlife industry and the grocery business, we’re growing here. We get more products on the shelves and more people know about us, says Karlsen.

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Food, travel, electricity – they’re much more expensive

– Dare to think again

Their good years come from working hard over time, Carlsen says. He also believes that the brewery is good at new and creative thinking.

– How will you continue the good trend?

It’s about continuing the same good work, innovating and being able to deliver. We must dare to think of new things and we will continue to do so. It has its risks and costs, but we are convinced that we cannot stand idly by. We must continue to develop in all areas, whether it is within sustainability, information technology or other areas that can give us an advantage over others.

From Sweden to New Zealand

Naturally, the international market has taken a turn for the worse in recent years. Karlsen hopes that they can provide beer to the world’s avid citizens of the future.

Exports were affected by Corona and did not improve due to the current shipping rates. But we still serve beer abroad, with Sweden being the closest, while New Zealand is the farthest away, says Carlsen.

He points out that it is difficult to establish a profitable business model in a distant foreign country.

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– Carlsen concludes that the price situation abroad makes it difficult, but we hope to return to further growth and development also abroad during 2023.

Dalila Awolowo

Dalila Awolowo

"Explorer. Unapologetic entrepreneur. Alcohol fanatic. Certified writer. Wannabe tv evangelist. Twitter fanatic. Student. Web scholar. Travel buff."

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