The headcount at East African Breweries Plc (EABL) fell by 168 in the financial year ended June, taking the number of employees below 1,500 for the first time in over seven years.
The Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed firm’s disclosure in the latest annual report puts the headcount at 1,408 compared with 1,576 that the beer maker had at the end of June 2022.
Production employees were reduced by 122 to 759 while those in management and administration declined by 70 to 207. Those in sales and distribution meanwhile bucked the trend, rising by 24 to 442.
This came in the period EABL's net profit fell by 21 percent to Ksh12.32 billion ($83.81 million) from Ksh15.57 billion ($105.92 million). EABL’s profit drop was largely attributable to higher costs with a cocktail of increased indirect taxes, cost of sales and net finance costs.
This is the first time in over seven years for the EABL staff size to be below 1,500. EABL's headcount was at 1,609 in 2017 but the brewer shed 109 jobs over a four-year period to close 2021 at 1,500.
It then added 76 jobs in 2022 as earnings more than doubled from Ksh6.96 billion ($47.3 million) to Ksh15.57 billion on recovery from Covid-19 disruptions.
EABL’s employee costs for the period under review was Ksh13.5 billion ($91.8 million) compared with Ksh13.2 billion ($89.8 million) a year earlier and Ksh9.35 billion ($63.6 million) seven years earlier, pointing to increased remuneration.