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CARIB declares war on beer competitors

CARIB Award

Amrick Jagdeo – Salesman of the Year 2014 at CARIB Brewery Limited, accepts his award from Gabriel Faria – Managing Director of CARIB Brewery Limited. Photo by: Sean Nero.

Although faced with fierce competition and a sluggish start to 2014, business is good at Carib Brewery Ltd, according to chairman Andrew Sabga. He said a shortage of raw materials forced some of the brewery’s well-known products off the shelves for the first two quarters of 2014 and this provided fertile ground for competitors to grow, Sabga said when he addressed the company’s recent sales swards at its Champ Fleurs headquarter.

He said supply shortages, “allowed our competition to capitalise on the situation, thereby growing their monthly sales and growing their market share threefold. But all wasn’t lost. In fact, our soft drink portfolio of brands exceeded budget and the 2013 figure by a whopping 10.4 per cent. All of the soft drink brands did well, but this category was mainly driven by the malt brands, led by Smalta and Shandy.”

Sabga added: “December 2014 was the highest sales month ever in the history of the company. It goes to show that if we put our minds to it and remain focused and we have a clear plan, there is nothing we can’t achieve. We have increased competition from existing and new brands coming into the market, but against that back drop we will continue to plod along, fighting to achieve our sales targets sip by sip, bottle by bottle; can by can; six pack by six pack; case by case; outlet by outlet.

“We didn’t invite those foreign brands that came to be running amok in our market. We will not sleep until they are no more. The battle is on and we will stay the course until we win back every inch of territory lost over the past two years.” Sabga said there are challenges ahead for the beverage sector including the impact of falling oil and gas prices on the economy. He said supermarket owners are already talking about sluggish first quarter results.

Even so, he urged Carib’s sales team to stay the course and to continue satisfying customer needs. “There are few guarantees in life, but as sure as the sun rises each and every day we will continue to face adverse circumstances threatening our goals and aspirations, be it the economic environment, government policy, competition, crime. Whatever you want to call it, there is very little that can deter us from achieving our goals once we put our minds and hearts to it.

“It is very, very lonely at the top. We have grown accustomed to being at the top of the food chain, enjoying success in spite of our mishaps. When you are dominating the market it is very easy to slip and not see the impact of that on your results,” Sabga said.

“Not everyone is happy seeing us remain at the top and many people and many organisations will do any and everything in their power to see us stumble and fall. As individuals, we may find it difficult to stave off threats to our livelihood, but if we band together, we can succeed in whatever we set out minds to. If we band together as one, with one common focus, one plan and all hands on deck, there is nothing–regardless of the situation and circumstances–that we can’t achieve.”

Taken from: Trinidad Guardian
Story by: Sean Nero
Photo by: Sean Nero
Date: Monday 27th April, 2015
Page: A15, Business
http://www.guardian.co.tt/business/2015-04-27/carib-declares-war-beer-competitors

Corporate Communications Department
ANSA McAL Group of Companies
Monday 27th April, 2015