Summer sun lifts profits at AG Barr

Selection of bottles photographed from above AG Barr's failed merger with its rival Britvic cost the company about £5m

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Warm weather over the summer has boosted the profits at AG Barr, which makes Irn Bru and other soft drinks.

The firm made a pre-tax profit of £16.6m before one-off costs - a 12.3% increase compared with 2012.

However the company said its failed merger with Britvic cost it a total of nearly £5m.

AG Barr said the soft drinks market had "benefited from the excellent summer weather, however competition remains intense".

It added that "price promotion in the category has continued to accelerate, with the largest brands increasing the depth and quantum of price promotion".

First-half sales of AG Barr's brands, which also include Rubicon, Orangina, and Tizer, increased by 5.8% which is ahead of the total soft drinks market of 4.5%.

During that period, the better weather meant that the growth rate in the second quarter was more than double that of the first quarter.

In September 2012, AG Barr announced a plan to merge with its major rival, Britvic. However the deal was referred to the competition commission, and even although it received clearance the deal fell through.

The Cumbernauld-based firm said its focus over the past six months had been on the completion of its facility at Magna Park, Milton Keynes, which was now in commercial production.

It said the plant was performing "ahead of expectations".

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