HARARE – (FinX) Afdis total volumes for the quarter declined 50% as reduced consumer spending took a toll on demand but turnover rose 286% in the quarter to September.
MD Cecil Gombera told the AGM earlier today that the current business performance, characterised by high inflation, reduced disposable incomes and the shortage of foreign currency had necessitated frequent price increases. He however noted that the adjustments had been moderate cognisant of the affordability issues facing consumers.
The focus has had to be on business viability through good cost management throughout the value chain and this will be the trend going forward.
In the period, Spirits volume declined 31% although some positives had been seen through recent product innovation strategies in the white spirit category. Gombera said, the launch and market place acceptance of ‘Whitestone’,a local Gin brand has boosted volume performance of this category.
In the Ready to Drink category volumes were down 63% after last year’s record sales due to the pricing adjustments taken in view of current inflation. The group said, initiatives to grow volumes include the recent launch of Sting spirit cooler in a PET pack to enhance product availability and address affordability issues.
On Wines, Gombera said that spend grew 326% due to price inflation while volumes declined by49%. Product availability during the quarter was heavily impacted by the unavailability of foreign currency. “Plans to localise targeted popular wine brands are afoot and should give this category the needed market place boost.”
Going forward, Gombera said affordability issues would remain a challenge but volume recovery initiatives driven by introduction of products with lower foreign currency content.
Shareholders approved directors fees of $113 444 and auditors fees of $405 000 while they also endorsed a share buyback.