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Adnams PLC - Final Results

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Adnams plc · ADB

07/06/2023 07:00

Adnams PLC - Final Results
RNS Number : 8453B
Adnams PLC
07 June 2023

Adnams plc Results for the 12 Months to 31 December 2022


Adnams, the brewer, distiller and retailer has today published its Report & Accounts for the 12 months to 31 December 2022, showing sales of £64.2m and a £1.2m operating loss.


Commenting on 2022, Jonathan Adnams OBE, Chairman said: "In the early months of 2022 the beer market began its journey back to health, and customers were clearly pleased to be visiting pubs and bars again throughout our heartland and London. Our retail shops, hotels and pubs enjoyed a good beginning to the year, enabling the payment of an interim dividend."


The Adnams Report & Accounts headlines include:

·    Sales grew from 2020 to £64.2m

·    Beer volumes grew 2.7% on 2021

·    Net bank debt £13.9m

·    Positive EBITDA of £2.7m

·    2022 interim dividend


Revenues were up £7m from 2021, which benefitted from buoyant trading in the early months of the year, but would have been higher had demand not suffered as consumer confidence fell away. This, coupled with the impact of the war in Ukraine and rising inflation put significant pressure on our underlying cost base, requiring the business to manage cashflows tightly.  The resultant EBITDA of £2.7m is evidence of our ability to continuously strive to make efficiencies in our processes and harness our IT systems technology.


We won a number of awards in the year, including:

·    Worlds Whiskies Awards: Icon Award for Rye Whisky, Silver for Single Malt Whisky and Category winner for Rye Malt Whisky

·    IWSC Gin and Spirit Awards: Bronze for both Copper House Gin and First Rate Gin

·    Siba Independent Regional Beer: Gold for Dry Hopped Lager


Our 150th celebrations gave the opportunity to bring back Spindrift, following a public vote, develop a hazy pale ale called Sea Fog and produce a limited release barrel-aged beer called '150'.  We also celebrated Broadside's 50th birthday, an ale entwined in our heritage and location at Sole Bay.


Ghost Ship in both 4.5% and 0.5% formats continued as the company's best-selling beer and Copper House Dry Gin remained its best-selling spirit.



Chairmans Statement (from accounts released on 07 June 2023)


As I prepared this report one year ago, I talked with some hope that the two years of pandemic were behind us and that the world for brewing, distilling and hospitality would enjoy a period of stability as markets returned to some normality and businesses in our sector would be able to rebuild their balance sheets. I wrote those words before the Russian invasion of Ukraine and all the implications this has brought to economies around the world with the widely reported knock-on effects for global energy and commodity prices. The UK economy was far from immune and has been profoundly impacted. This, along with the instability brought about by the autumn mini-budget, rising interest rates and industrial unrest, has led to consumer confidence levels being at their lowest for decades. It is no overstatement to suggest that, for the company and the wider brewing and hospitality sector, the business environment has been at least as challenging as during the Covid-19 pandemic. In the final nine months of 2022, the business has had to absorb a £4.9m increase to its costs base driven by rising prices. The business has worked extremely hard during the year to mitigate inflation, control expenses, manage cash flows and serve customers well. However, it has had no alternative other than to pass most of the increased costs through to customers.


The challenge for Adnams and the sector as a whole is to ensure that the increased costs of going out are met with an experience that the customer values and feels compelled to repeat even during a cost-of-living crisis. Our response has been, through our data, to know our customer better, to maintain quality in all that we do, and to seek to exceed their expectations. Related to this, as the company emerged from the pandemic, it needed to catch up on a property maintenance deficit and this has been the principal driver behind borrowing increasing by £2.9m to £13.9m as we invested in the long-term fabric of our buildings. It is against this backdrop and given continued uncertainty in the UK economy that the company is unable to recommend a final dividend this year. The Board keeps this matter under regular review and wishes to return to its regular pattern of paying dividends as soon as practicable.


During the year the business was able to rebuild sales to £64.2m and has generated an EBITDA, a proxy for cash flow, of £2.7m. When depreciation and interest are added, this leads to an operating loss of £1.2m (2021: £0.9m). In the early months of 2022, there were certainly signs of recovery as the beer market began its journey back to health, following a 55% fall in the previous two years, and customers were clearly pleased to be visiting pubs and bars again throughout our heartland and London. Our retail shops, hotels and pubs also enjoyed a good beginning to the year and we were able to pay an interim dividend in February of 156p per 'B' share and 39p per 'A' share reflecting strong trading in the summer of 2021 and the good start to 2022. By mid-year the impact of the conflict in Ukraine and its implications for the UK economy were being felt and this led to the beer market beginning to plateau and customer sentiment begin to move from a broadly positive stance to concerns about inflation and the cost of living. The long warm summer offset this to a certain extent and bookings in our well-located hotels, pubs and restaurants remained strong through this period. As we moved from summer to autumn, the mood began to change as the nation mourned the passing of the Queen and the mini-budget hit consumer confidence hard.


Throughout all of this, the low and no alcohol sector has been enjoying continual growth and our Ghost Ship 0.5% beer has become the best-selling Lo/No Ale in the on-trade and, alongside its full-strength sibling Ghost Ship, it continues to secure further distribution in both the on- and off-trade. We also won some awards in the year, which are a useful external validation of our product quality. The World Whiskies Awards 2022 saw Adnams Rye Malt Whisky win an 'Icon' award and be inducted into the Whisky Hall of Fame, the International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC) gave awards to our Copper House Gin and First Rate Gin, Dry Hopped Lager won a Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) Gold award and was supported by Silver awards for Adnams New England IPA and Innovation and Bronze awards for Mosaic Pale Ale and Kobold English Lager. The quality and distinctiveness of our products will always remain a priority of ours.


The autumn also saw us celebrate the 150th anniversary of Adnams. We were joined over two days by suppliers, local dignitaries and the wider Adnams team to celebrate all the company has achieved. Across the two days, I was able to present both the long heritage of Adnams and talk of the more contemporary things we have done with our award-winning products and our approach to wider societal work through the Adnams Community Trust (ACT) and our commitment to environmental sustainability. We also produced a suite of beer products to mark the occasion, bringing back Spindrift following a public vote, undertaking a collaboration brew with Sierra Nevada called Eastern Edge, encouraging one of our young brewers to develop a hazy pale ale called Sea Fog and, finally, producing a limited release barrel-aged beer called '150'. The year also saw Broadside celebrate its 50th birthday. Once described by a customer as 'fruitcake in a glass', this classic dark bitter remains a firm favourite with customers in cask format and in bottle as Broadside, Strong Original. The name is derived from naval guns firing a 'Broadside' during the battle of Sole Bay in June 1672. To mark the company's 150th and Broadside's 50th - I was delighted to receive the gift of a new pub sign for the Sole Bay Inn, Southwold. This beautiful work of art depicting the battle was hand-painted by Dave Barber and replaces a sign produced by his father. Three generations of Barbers have contributed so much to Adnams over the years and embody the long-term, mutually beneficial relationships the company builds. This latest example of the signwriter's craft can be seen hanging proudly outside the Sole Bay Inn for all to see. The period of celebration culminated in December with the Lord Lieutenant presenting the company with its third Queen's Award for Sustainable Development.


The outside world remains uncertain and volatile. Early in the year, we had looked forward to our markets returning to normal post pandemic. The start to the year promised this, then global events transpired and has led to the UK and the rest of the world facing many challenges from economic, social and environmental perspectives. Our response is that we continue to pursue our long-term strategy of building a premium beer, spirits and hospitality brand that attracts and grows its loyal customer base. We do this by continuing to invest in the fabric of our hotels, pubs, shops and online businesses, by exceeding customers, expectations in terms of service and product quality, and by using our data to better target offers towards customers to reward their loyalty. Simultaneously, we are digitally transforming our back office for better efficiency and effectiveness. Relationships in our supply chain remain strong and we remain committed to operating with care for the natural, built and social environment and to doing the right thing.


The pandemic slowed down our Board succession plan as we opted for continuity and experience, as our industry endured the impact of the prolonged closure of large parts of the business. Having come through this period of uncertainty, I am able to announce a number of Board changes in accordance with good corporate governance.


First, I would like to express my gratitude to Bridget McIntyre who retired as a non-executive director of Adnams on the 31 December 2022. During her nine-year tenure, Bridget has brought wise counsel and considerable expertise to the Board. Bridget will continue her role as Chair of the Adnams Pension Trustees and I thank her for her contribution to the company over the years.


Bridget has been succeeded by Simon Townsend. Simon was most recently CEO of Ei Group plc, the FTSE-listed owner and operator of 4,000 pubs across England and Wales. Simon also served as a non-executive director of Countryside Properties from March 2019 to November 2022 and is a non-executive director of private equity owned Cote Restaurants and senior adviser at global consultancy Teneo. He is also a member of the advisory board of diversity and inclusion organisation WiHTL.


Nicky Dulieu also intends to retire as a non-executive director at the company's Annual General Meeting and having been in office for over nine years will not be offering herself for reappointment. Again, I thank Nicky for her nine years of service to the company, and her expertise and counsel has been invaluable during that time.

Nicky will be succeeded by Sacha Berendji. Sacha is a qualified accountant and has extensive experience in the UK retail industry.


Sacha joined Marks & Spencer in 1994 through their graduate recruitment scheme and has held a number of senior roles in the company and is currently their Operations Director, responsible for their stores, property and store development.  Sacha has joined the Board as a non-executive director, and will chair our audit committee.


Having been appointed by the Board during the year, both Simon and Sacha will resign at the company's Annual General Meeting and offer themselves for reappointment, in accordance with the company's articles of association.


Finally, Guy Heald intends to retire as a non-executive director of the company at the company's Annual General Meeting this year. Guy joined the Board in April 2015 and is a long-term supporter of the company. His family has been involved with Adnams since its very early days and is a major shareholder. Guy has suggested that he be succeeded by his son, Andrew Heald, and the Board has agreed to this seeing it as the natural succession of a major stakeholder in the company.


Finally, it just leaves me to say that I am grateful to the whole Adnams team and to our loyal shareholder base in supporting the company through these uncertain and challenging times.


Dr Jonathan Adnams OBE




Adnams plc profit and loss account

For the year ended 31 December








Other operating income



Operating expenses



Operating loss



Gain/(loss) on disposal of assets



Loss on financial instruments at fair value



Loss before interest and taxation



Interest payable



Other finance charge on pension scheme



Loss before taxation



Tax on loss on ordinary activities






Earnings per share basic and diluted

'A' Shares of 25p each



'B' Shares of £1 each




Balance sheet

As at 31 December






Intangible assets



Tangible fixed assets







Current assets







Cash at bank and in hand






Creditors: amounts falling due within one year



Net current assets



Total assets less current liabilities



Creditors: amounts falling due after more than one year



Derivative financial instruments falling due after more than one year



Provision for liabilities





Net assets excluding pension liability



Pension liability



Net assets including pension liability



Capital and reserves

Called-up share capital



Share premium



Profit and loss account



Equity shareholders' funds




The Directors have not recommended a final dividend for the financial year ending 31 December 2022.


The information contained in the above profit and loss account and balance sheet has been extracted from the audited accounts of Adnams PLC for the year ended 31 December 2022. The statement preceding the profit and loss account is unaudited.


A trading update will be released on 30th June 2023.


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