more active part in information. A forth coming industry-wide approach in The Netherlands will accordingly receive every support from us. Social policy During the period under review we have again enjoyed good labour relationships throughout the Group. We wish to express our gratitude here for the way in which our employees in The Netherlands and abroad have once again worked energetically for the interests of our enterprise. On December 311979, there were 20,298 persons employed in the consolidated companies, compared with 19,719 at the end of September 1978. Prospects In the 'seventies the demand for our pro ducts in The Netherlands and abroad has risen constantly. Our beer brands occupy a leading position in many markets, witness also the fact that in the past ten years the volume of beer brewed under Heineken's supervision has more than doubled. In the same period the Soft Drinks and Spirit and Wine groups have also undergone consi derable growth, becoming an essential part of the activities in The Netherlands. The deliberately pursued policy of inter nationalization has made a substantial contribution to this prosperous course of affairs. The broadening of the basis in Europe, particularly in France, Italy and Greece, constitutes a special element in the geographical expansion. Another striking example of internationa lization is the position which we have won in the United States, as a result of which this market has grown to be one of the mainstays of our enterprise. In addition, during the past ten years we have streng thened our position in many other areas by the enlargement of export activities, the acquisition of participations or the granting of licences. This expansion has been accompanied by a profit growth such that sufficient appropriations to reserves could be made to maintain the shareholders' equity. The consequence of this was that the financial basis of the Group has re mained healthy. A solid foundation has thus been laid for the continuity of our enterprise. Building on what has been achieved in the past, we take a positive view as regards the years ahead and we see adequate possibili ties for further extension of our activities. In that connection it is of vital importance that we should continue to follow closely the latest developments in the engineering and technological fields. We shall also continue to give a quick commercial res ponse to changing market conditions. For this purpose we have devoted employees at our disposal. As we pointed out previously, the extent to which the sales growth is reflected in the earnings remains highly dependent on factors - apart from the internal cost con trol - upon which we have no influence or only limited influence. We believe, however, that through the in ternational nature of our activities we can cope with negative influences through po sitive actions and factors. In these circumstances it may be expected that the earnings of the enterprise will at least be maintained at a satisfactory level. Sales proceeds (in millions of guilders) Beer Soft drinks Spirits and wine 1974/75 1975/76 1976/77 1977/78

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Heineken Contact | 1980 | | pagina 13