SOFT drinks company Britvic said sales of fizzy beverages in the UK returned to growth – despite the poor summer weather.
But revenues from its still drinks, which include a bottled water business at Birkby, were down.
Volumes at its carbonates division, which includes Pepsi products made under licence, rose by 4.6% in the three months to October 2 – having fallen by 1.6% in the previous quarter.
Sales of its still drinks, which also include Fruit Shoot and J20, were down by 5.2% in the three months to October 2 – as volumes slipped by 4% despite reducing its average price.
Overall UK volumes increased by 1.9% in the quarter, having declined by 5.3% in the previous three months.
UK sales were up by 2.5% in the quarter, although this was a slight slowdown from 2.7% in the full year, as the disappointing summer weather and squeeze in consumer spending took their toll.
Shares, which have dropped 30% in the past year, closed 19.7p higher at 328p after traders said the UK business had proved resilient.
The group’s overall performance was held back by Ireland, where revenues were down by 8.3% in the quarter due to poor weather and weak consumer spending.
The group previously said the washout start to the summer had hampered its performance, particularly in and around the Wimbledon tennis fortnight, which is a key event for its Robinsons brand.
Overall sales increased by 15% to £1.3bn in the year – boosted by the takeover of Fruite Entreprises, now known as Britvic France, for £198m in May last year.
Charles Pick, an analyst at Numis, said: “Britvic’s full year update is somewhat mixed, but matters could have been worse.”