Industry Research Alcoholic Beverage Producers

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1 Alcoholic Beverage Producers Industry Outlook: Stable Tax Hike and Weaker Economy Reduce Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages Executive Summary 19 September 2013 Ruangwud Jarurungsipong Nopalak Rakthum The alcoholic beverage market in Thailand comprises two main products: beer and white spirits. Consumption of alcoholic beverages has fallen in the past few years. Two main factors drive demand: growth in disposable income and population growth. However, the growth in consumption has been hindered by some negative factors, such as higher excise tax rates, political uncertainty, more strict regulations and new restrictions, health concerns, and various campaigns against drinking conducted by the government. Beer consumption rebounded in 2012, after the market shrank during the past few years. The rebound came because private sector spending rose and so did consumer confidence. We believe that the increase in beer consumption in 2012 was driven in part by an increase in the excise taxes collected on spirits. However, the recent hike in the excise tax and the current economic slowdown should reduce alcoholic beverage consumption in the second half of Market competition remains intense. In the beer market, the Boon Rawd Brewery Group holds the largest market share, followed by the ThaiBev Group. For the spirits market, ThaiBev remains the dominant producer, especially in the white spirits and blended spirits segments.

2 Million Baht % Industry Research Thailand s alcoholic beverage market is dominated by beer and white spirits Thailand s alcoholic beverage market is huge, with approximately three billion liters of spirits and beer sold annually. In addition to population growth and an increasing number of new products, active marketing campaigns by domestic producers have played a vital role in stimulating demand. Evidence of the effectiveness of the market campaigns can be shown by the rapid rise in beer consumption in the past. Since 1997, beer has dominated the Thai alcoholic beverage market, due to the marketing strategies employed by the two big domestic producers. Beer accounts for almost two-thirds of alcoholic beverages consumed in Thailand. The second most popular alcoholic beverage consumed in Thailand is white spirits, due to its low price and high alcohol content. According to the Excise Department, in terms of excise tax revenue, beer accounted for 54.81% of the taxes paid on alcoholic beverages in fiscal year White spirits comprised 15.04% of the taxes paid. Chart 1: Real Alcoholic Beverage Consumption and GDP Growth 200, , , , , ,000 80,000 60,000 40,000 20, Alcoholic Beverages Consumption Alcoholic Beverages Consumption Growth (R-axis) GDP Growth (R-axis) Source: Office of National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB) TRIS Rating 2 19 September 2013

3 Million Liters % Industry Research Amount of alcoholic beverages consumed weakened in the past few years The amount of real alcoholic beverages consumed grew by the average of 3.0% annually during However, the amount consumed fell by 2.6% in 2011 because of the big flood. This was the second drop since 2009, when the amount of alcoholic beverages consumed plunged 11.4% year-on-year due to the economic slump. After the Thai economy recovered from the 2011 flood, consumption of alcoholic beverages partially rebounded. However, the growth in consumption has been hindered by some negative factors, such as higher excise tax rates, political uncertainty, more strict regulations and more restrictions, health concerns, and various campaigns against drinking conducted by the government. Chart 2: Beer Consumption in Thailand 2,500 2,000 1,500 1, Beer Sales Growth Rate (R-axis) Source: Office of Industrial Economics (OIE) Beer consumption rebounded in 2012 According to the Office of Industrial Economics (OIE), the amount of beer sold increased by 12.8% in 2012, after falling by 3.9% in The rise in 2012 was mainly due to the rebound in private sector spending and rising consumer confidence. The excise taxes for spirits rose in August 2012, making spirits more expensive relative to beer. Therefore, some spirits drinkers may switch to drink beer. Despite the excise tax hike, consumption of spirits rose in The rise came because the dominant spirits producer sold more products and because imports rose compared with the previous year. Alcoholic beverage consumption in 2013 is expected to grow moderately. According to the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board (NESDB), gross domestic product (GDP) in Thailand in 2013 is projected to grow by 3.8%-4.3%, down from 6.5% in Spirits consumption, particularly local spirits, is expected to continue TRIS Rating 3 19 September 2013

4 increasing, as social drinking is a strong element of the Thai culture. Beer consumption should grow at a slower rate in the future, because it will be hindered by several negative factors, such as an excise tax increase. However, beer consumption also depends on the marketing strategies employed by the major beer producers. Dominated by a few producers After alcoholic beverage production in Thailand was liberalized in 2000, the industry has been dominated by two producers: the ThaiBev Group and the Boon Rawd Brewery Group. The ThaiBev Group, which is a major producer of spirits and beer, is the owner of a number of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage brands, such as Ruang Khao white spirits, Sang Som brown spirits, Chang beer (Chang Classic, Chang Draught, Chang Light, and Chang Export), Archa beer, Federbräu, Chang soda water, and Chang drinking water. The Boon Rawd Brewery Group is the country s pioneer in the beer industry. The Boon Rawd Brewery Group produces Singha beer, Leo beer, Singha drinking water, and Singha soda water. The premium spirits market segment is dominated by imported brands. In contrast, the economy spirits segment is dominated by local products, especially white distilled spirits and blended spirits. The products of the ThaiBev Group, including Ruang Khao, Sang Som, Pai Thong, Mungkorn Thong, Blend 285, Hong Thong, and other brands, should continue to hold the major share of the economy spirits segment in Thailand. Currently, all alcoholic beverages imported from ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) member nations are subject to a 0% import tariff. The cuts in the tariffs took effect in January The tariff cuts may change the alcohol consumption patterns of Thai people over the medium to long term. Competitors from AFTA member nations include brewers, distillers, and distributors from the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Chart 3: Beer Market Share by Company in 2012 Others 0% ThaiBev 30% Boon Rawd Brewery 66% Thai Asia Pacific Brewery 4% Source: Nielsen Company TRIS Rating 4 19 September 2013

5 Beer market competition has intensified since 1995 Competition in the beer market has been intense since ThaiBev introduced Chang beer in 1995, targeting the medium- to low-income consumer segment. Before then, Singha beer had long controlled the market and was noted as a signature product of Thailand. The emergence of Chang beer opened up another segment of the domestic beer market. As the economy beer segment is relatively large, new brands have been introduced into this segment, such as Leo beer by the Boon Rawd Brewery Group and Cheers beer by Thai Asia Pacific Co., Ltd., the brewer of Heineken in Thailand. Competition in this segment, between the ThaiBev Group and the Boon Rawd Brewery Group, is noteworthy, as the two producers have used aggressive marketing strategies, such as product bundling and price cutting along with other efforts, to create brand loyalty. Four years after the launch, Chang beer became the most popular beer in 1998 and held more than half of the beer market between 2003 and However, through active marketing campaigns and the introduction of Leo, the Boon Rawd Brewery Group regained market share. Leo beer has had the highest share since In 2012, Leo beer remained the market leader with approximately 60% market share, whereas the market share of Chang beer fell to 25%. Consumers in the economy segment are more price-sensitive. Thus, the ability of producers to control costs and the ability to achieve efficiencies in the distribution network are the key factors for success. The premium beer segment, in contrast, has been dominated by Heineken, owing to its brand name and image. These two factors make it difficult for newcomers to build market share in a short time. Growth in Asia induces consolidation of brewers Due to the good prospects for the alcoholic beverage industry in developing regions such as Asia, there have been many mergers and acquisitions among beverage producers in recent years, For example, ThaiBev purchased a 28.6% stake in Fraser and Neave (F&N), while Heineken pursued and acquired Asia Pacific Breweries (APB). Other brewers have formed strategic alliances, such as Boon Rawd Brewery and Carlsberg. These changes will give producers larger market presence in fast-growing economies. The producers can capitalize on the rapid growth in the fast-growing economies to enhance their cost effectiveness in marketing, advertising, logistics, and distribution. Also, the consolidations among brewers may lead to a larger market with a greater variety of products. Regulations exert a substantial influence over consumption Alcoholic beverage producers and traders are subject to qualifications set by the Excise Department and the Department of Industrial Works (DIW) in order to get licenses. Apart from TRIS Rating 5 19 September 2013

6 being a Thai company, applicants must meet minimum requirements regarding production capacity, plant area, registered capital, and other measures. Small producers find it difficult to enter this industry. One exception is the production of traditional spirits, for which the rules and requirements have been minimized. Alcoholic beverages are also subject to excise tax and value added tax. Excise tax is the largest component of alcoholic beverage prices. The tax rates have been raised frequently. To discourage consumption of beverages with high alcohol content, the excise taxes collected from distilled spirits have been adjusted so as to be based mainly on alcohol content. Starting from 4 September 2013, Thailand s excise tax structure for alcoholic beverages was changed and new tax rates took effect. The excise taxes on alcoholic drinks were organized into new categories, and new tax collecting procedures were implemented. Compared with the previous excise tax ceiling for alcoholic beverages, the new rates were higher. The tax is collected on alcoholic beverages from both an ad valorem tax and a specific tax. In addition, the government now employs a new method to calculate excise taxes. The taxes are based on the wholesale prices at the last step in the supply chain. The Excise Department expects to receive Bt10 billion more in tax revenue from the new excise tax regime. Moreover, alcoholic beverage consumption will be reduced by approximately 5%, as the overall price of alcoholic beverage will rise by 10%-15%. TRIS Rating expects that this new measure, in addition to the current economic slowdown, may dampen alcoholic beverage consumption and production during the remainder of 2013, if not longer. The drinkers in the low income group will be affected more greatly than drinkers in the high income group. Drinkers who enjoy beverages with high alcohol content will pay more tax than drinkers who imbibe in low alcohol content beverages. The government has introduced several programs to control drinking. The programs include restrictions on advertising and restrictions on the times when alcoholic beverages can be sold. At present, advertising for alcohol-containing products can run from 10 pm until 5 am of the next day. Producers must label alcoholic beverage containers and advertise alcohol decreases driving ability. Alcoholic beverages are not allowed to be sold in stores located in a retail gas station. Consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited while driving or riding in vehicles using public roads, except on trains. In addition, the Alcoholic Beverage Control Act, B.E (2008), came into effect on 14 February The National Alcoholic Beverage Policy Committee and the Alcoholic Beverage Control Committee were established. Under the Act, many new enforcement efforts were established. For example, there are now in place prohibitions on alcoholic beverage consumption in gas stations and schools, and the prohibition of discounts offered to customers. The minimum age of persons who can purchase alcoholic beverages was raised from 18 to 20 years old. All of these measures could have a negative impact on the growth prospects of this industry. TRIS Rating 6 19 September 2013

7 Table 1: New Excise Tax -- Rates for Alcoholic Beverages in Thailand Excise Tax Type Ad Valorem Specific (Whichever Is Higher) Specific (Additional Tax for Exceeded Degree of Alcohol Content) (%) (Baht/Liter of Pure (Baht/Liter) (Baht/Liter/Degree) Alcohol) 1.Fermented alcoholic beverages 1.1 Beer (by alcohol content) -Not exceeding 7 degrees Exceeding 7 degrees Wine (by alcohol content) -Not exceeding 15 degrees, with Bt600 or 0 1, lower last wholesale price -Exceeding 15 degrees, with Bt600 or lower 0 1, last wholesale price -Not exceeding 15 degrees, and exceeding 36 1, Bt600 last wholesale price -Exceeding 15 degrees, and exceeding Bt , last wholesale price 1.3 Others (by alcohol content) -Not exceeding 15 degrees Exceeding 15 degrees Distilled alcoholic beverages 2.1 White spirits (by alcohol content) -Not exceeding 40 degrees Exceeding 40 degrees Others (by alcohol content) -Not exceeding 45 degrees Exceeding 45 degrees Source: Excise Department Alcoholic beverage producers rated by TRIS Rating (as of Aug 2013) Company Rating Outlook Thai Beverage PLC (THAIBEV) AA- Stable TRIS Rating 7 19 September 2013

8 TRIS Rating Co., Ltd., Tel: ext 500 Silom Complex Building, 24th Floor, 191 Silom Road, Bangkok 10500, Thailand, Copyright 2013, TRIS Rating Co., Ltd. All rights reserved. Any unauthorized use, disclosure, copying, republication, further transmission, dissemination, redistribution or storing for subsequent use for any purpose, in whole or in part, in any form or manner or by any means whatsoever, by any person, of the credit rating reports or information is prohibited. The credit rating is not a statement of fact or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold any debt instruments. It is an expression of opinion regarding credit risks for that instrument or particular company. The opinion expressed in the credit rating does not represent investment or other advice and should therefore not be construed as such. Any rating and information contained in any report written or published by TRIS Rating has been prepared without taking into account any recipient s particular financial needs, circumstances, knowledge and objectives. Therefore, a recipient should assess the appropriateness of such information before making an investment decision based on this information. Information used for the rating has been obtained by TRIS Rating from the company and other sources believed to be reliable. Therefore, TRIS Rating does not guarantee the accuracy, adequacy, or completeness of any such information and will accept no liability for any loss or damage arising from any inaccuracy, inadequacy or incompleteness. Also, TRIS Rating is not responsible for any errors or omissions, the result obtained from, or any actions taken in reliance upon such information. All methodologies used can be found at TRIS Rating 8 19 September 2013

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