Photographer: Freya Ingrid Morales/Bloomberg

Carlsberg Sees Higher Earnings in 2016 Fueled by Asian Markets

Carlsberg A/S, the world’s fourth-biggest brewer, said earnings will rise this year, helped by growth markets in Asia.

Operating profit will rise by a low single-digit percentage on an organic basis, the Copenhagen-based maker of Tuborg beer said in a statement Wednesday as it reported fourth-quarter earnings that beat analysts’ estimates.

Carlsberg is cutting jobs and closing breweries after years of declining profit tied to Russia’s shrinking beer market. Turmoil in Ukraine and the ruble’s decline have dented consumer confidence in the country, where Carlsberg is the largest beermaker through its ownership of Baltika Breweries. The company said it will unveil its new strategy for growth to investors on March 16.

Fourth-quarter earnings before interest, taxes and one-time items fell 21 percent to 1.41 billion kroner ($210 million). The average of analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg was for 1.22 billion kroner.

“Our businesses in western and eastern Europe had a challenging year,” Cees ’t Hart, chief executive officer since June, said in the statement. “As a consequence of the strong Asian results, however, 2015 marked the inflection point when the growth markets of Asia accounted for a larger part of the group than eastern Europe.”

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