CARLSBERG BREWERY MALAYSIA BHD is confident of defending its dominant position in the local beer market amid a price war, weak economic conditions and competition from smuggled beer.
According to Carlsberg chairman Datuk Jorgen Bornhoft, the company has built up a strong, controlling market share of 64% over the years and is unlikely to give up its hard-earned top position without a fight.
“We have the financial muscle to defend our market share,” Bornhoft told reporters after the company AGM in Petaling Jaya yesterday.
Carlsberg’s closest rival in the local beer market has a 28% to 30% market share.
Bornhoft said the company was willing to offer discounts to maintain its market share as it would cost more to regain lost any lost ground.
“We are also confident that our strong Carlsberg brand, which we have built up as a premium brand, will still be the preferred product,” he said.
Bornhoft said he also hoped that the price war, which started three years ago, would taper off soon.
He said Carlsberg would embark on strategies to increase its current 18% share of the local stout market.
Bornhoft also said that the company had been receiving reports on declining patronage at pubs arising from the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) scare.
Last year, Carlsberg's group pre-tax profit fell 21.6% or RM34.8mil to RM126.8mil from RM161.7mil previously.
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