Running To Stand Still

OC&C's annual review of the Top 50 global FMCG companies (2010)

After the storm of recession, dead calm.  Sales have flattened for the top 50 fmcg giants of today but a few are speeding along. 

As recession battered global markets, the world’s biggest fmcg companies proved their mettle.  Huge, efficient and diverse, they ploughed through 2008’s economic storm – as with 2007’s spiralling inflation – virtually unscathed.  So, with the black clouds retreating, the relative calm of 2009 would be no challenge – right?

Wrong, The Global 50, compiled by OC&C Strategy Consultants, are labouring under some of the toughest conditions yet: stagnant consumer demand, volatile commodity prices and – on a scale note seen before = slick and effective local competition in emerging markets.

Overall sales growth dropped from 13.3% in 2008 to just 0.6% in 2009, while SAB Miller, Dean Foods and FrieslandCampina saw double-digit sales declines.  Four of the five biggest grocery companies experienced a dive in sales. Profit margins also suffered … 

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