Britvic has announced plans to close two factories and a warehouse in a bid to significantly reduce costs in its operations.
The soft drinks company wants to save £30 million from its outgoings by 2016 but it has placed around 400 jobs in jeopardy at its manufacturing facilities. This announcement is despite it recording strong profit with earnings before interest tax and amortisation (EBITA) reaching £53.6 million, representing a 27.6 per cent increase on the same period a year previous. The company currently makes brands such as Robinsons cordial and R Whites Lemonade and employs around 3,300 people.
The sites earmarked for closure include factories at Chelmsford and Huddersfield which are responsible for producing Drench and Pennine Spring Water. Britvic is also expected to cease trading at its warehouse in Belfast towards the end of the year.
Simon Litherland, Britvic's chief executive, said: “We regret the potential loss of jobs caused by the change and are committed to supporting affected employees and we will, of course, be consulting with our employees prior to implementing these initiatives."
Following the announcement of its financial results, the company stated that it is planning to combine its UK and Ireland businesses providing increased investment in procurement and product optimisation initiatives. A further £10 million has been highlighted for being put into the organisation's international business.
Britvic recently teamed up with PepsiCo UK to release a new brand of the Mountain Dew Energy drink. The companies stated that a sugar-free version of the beverage would be launched onto the UK market making it the first of its kind within the energy drink sector.
The firms were looking to target the 18 to 24 year old demographic, which is said to provide "perfect refreshing on-the-go boost with the added benefit of no sugar". Officials explained that it would be released in 500ml bottles and it is set to challenge the likes of giants such as Red Bull, Monster and even Lucozade in the highly competitive energy drink industry.