- Beverages bottling group Coca-Cola HBC reported a sharp decline in first-half profit as lower volumes hurt revenue, though the company said it had seen signs of improvement amid easing lockdown measures.

For the six months ended 26 June 2020, pre-tax profit fell 36% to €167.2m on-year as sales fell 15.5% to €2.8bn.

Volumes were down 9.2% as the pandemic had a 'significant impact on the out-of-home channel, leading to lower volumes, the vast majority of which came from single-serve package formats, in turn adversely impacting price/mix,' the company said.

'The best available evidence suggests that Q2 should have been the trough of performance caused by Covid-19,' it added.

'Our current trading continues to confirm sequential improvement. There is, however, a great deal of uncertainty on the nature, duration, extent and effectiveness of social distancing and other measures as we emerge from the withdrawal of lockdown across our territories,' it added.

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