JTI Romania, the local branch of Japan Tobacco International, the producer of cigarette brands Winston, Camel, Winchester, Monte Carlo or More, posted a mid-year turnover of 222 million euros, up 54% from the similar period of 2007. The company’s net gain on the local market was 4.15 million euro over the first six months of the year, six times more than in the similar period of 2007.
“The advance was the result of the takeover of Britain’s Gallaher Group, and of higher sales, especially for brands on the upper market segments that climbed by over 30%. The growth in turnover also occurred on the background of higher prices resulted from the tax rise,” said JTI Romania official Gilda Lazar. According to company reports, JTI has a market share of some 28% on the largest FMCG market by value. JTI acquired Gallaher Group in 2007; according to the Finance Ministry, Gallaher Group local turnover was 44 million euros.
British American Tobacco, JTI and Philip Morris share a market that stood at 2.4 – 2.5 bln euros in 2007. The three players are in the top 50 largest private companies in Romania. In the last 2 years cigarettes were the best selling products by value on the FMCG market, with total sales exceeding 2.5 times the beer and soft drinks market, reveals data by market research agency AC Nielsen.
In 2007 JTI Romania increased its exports from 7% of the total production to 14%; the company produces cigarettes for the Baltic States, Hungary and Bulgaria, and filters for Serbia and Andorra. JTI Romania’s turnover was 369.5 million euros in 2007, up 40% from the previous year, with profits standing at 14.5 million euros, for a market share of 29%. On the local cigarette market, the premium segment advances the fastest in terms of sales, but increasingly more tobacco lovers pick the slim cigarettes.