Lucas Bols reports 32% drop in revenue in 2020

Lucas Bols has reported an estimated 32% year-on-year decline in revenue for the 2020/21 financial year after widespread on-trade closures and travel restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Dutch distiller has reported an expected revenue € 57.3 million, with a gross margin of around 52.5%.

Normally, more than half of Lucas Bols’ sales are in the on-trade and with this channel heavily impacted by the pandemic, sales by distributors decreased by 16% year-on-year.

Recent on-trade re-openings have provided hope, resulted in growth in revenue in March, driven by key markets in the US, Australia, the UK and France.

Temporary amendments to financing arrangements, agreed with financiers in April 2020, have now been extended by two years.

Chief executive Huub van Doorne hailed these extensions as key to executing the company’s growth strategy.

“We are pleased with the agreed extension of the amendments to our financing arrangements, which reflects the ongoing support and commitment of the banks,” said van Doorne.

“This will enable us to benefit fully once restrictive measures are lifted and consumer demand recovers, and to continue to build our future by accelerating new strategic and commercial initiatives.”

Almost half of gross profit decline was offset by an € 8.5 million reduction in distribution and administrative expenses.

Strong cash conversion enabled the distiller to reduce net debt by € 6.9 million to € 92.4 million as at 31 March 2021.

The company will look to the roll-out of the vaccination programmes and gradual lifting of restriction to further drive recovery in losses.

Lucas Bols will publish its audited full-year results for the 2020/21 financial year on 27 May 2021.