Even Diageo's cocktail of brands won't guarantee heady profits in a pandemic

  Shuttered bars and restaurants will have taken their toll on the Guinness owner, which reports interim results this week Looking into the bottom of the glass as another evening draws to an end in an interminable winter lockdown, it may be tempting to believe the amount we drink has gone up. What else is there to do? Yet the experience of Diageo, maker of brands from Guinness to Johnnie Walker whisky and Smirnoff vodka, suggests something quite different: even if home drinking has picked up, the industry is missing the social drinker. The closure of pubs, bars and restaurants has forced alcohol companies into an abrupt rethink, as the balance shifts away from social venues and towards drinks bought for the home at off-licences or, increasingly, online. At its interim results on Thursday, Diageo will give further indications of whether home drinkers made up for a Christmas somewhat lacking in festive spirits. Continue reading... .. Full story on theguardian.com 

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