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RED BULL

Record profits for Red Bull in 2015

Austrian energy drink maker Red Bull said it posted record profits of 501 million euros ($559 million) in 2015, an increase of 35 percent, according to the economics magazine Trend.

Record profits for Red Bull in 2015
Photo: Paul Gillingwater

The unlisted firm, which does not directly publish its figures, saw drink sales nudge up 6.1 percent to 5.96 billion cans, its turnover rise 20 percent to 3.2 billion euros, and operating income soar by 90 percent to 633.3 million euros, according to Trend.

Red Bull's bottom line was boosted by a cost-cutting programme and a weaker euro, the magazine reported.

Distributed in 169 countries, sales of the energy drink took off in several markets, including Turkey (up 25 percent), South Africa and Saudi Arabia (19 percent), India (18 percent), Poland (18 percent) and Germany (16 percent).

Forty-nine percent of the company is owned by Austrian entrepreneur Dietrich Mateschitz, who set it up in 1987, with the remaining 51 percent stake held by the Thai Yoovidhya family, who own the patent to the drink.

Red Bull is a major sponsor of football, Formula One and extreme sports.

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FOOTBALL

Red Bull boss subjected to Nazi slur

Second-division German side Erzgebirge Aue has apologised to RB Leipzig and Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschitz after Aue fans displayed a banner showing the Austrian entrepreneur in Nazi uniform.

Red Bull boss subjected to Nazi slur
Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschitz. Photo: APA

Aue won 2-0 at home on Friday in Germany's second tier Bundesliga against ambitious RB Leipzig, who are sponsored by Austrian energy drink company Red Bull.

But home fans marred the victory by displaying several derogatory banners aimed at Mateschitz and his club.

Seventh-placed RB Leipzig is hoping for promotion to Germany's top tier this year, but is unpopular with German football fans due to the millions of euros invested by the drinks company.

"Out of Austria, only the best for Germany," read the text on one banner, under a drawing of Mateschitz dressed in a Nazi uniform, referring to Austria-born Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler.

Another read: "An Austrian calls and you follow blind, every child knows how that ended. You would have made good Nazis," aimed at the RB Leipzig club.

Aue are likely to be fined by the German Football Association (DFB), who are expected to investigate the matter.

"It's a mess, we strongly distance ourselves from the banners," Aue's president Helge Leonhardt said. "Three points won, but in the end a lot of prestige and recognition lost!"

The club put out an official statement distancing themselves from the banners. "We condemn these banners in the strongest possible terms," read the statement.

"We want nothing to do with people who bring these banners and signs, with such despicable content, into our stadium.

"A minority of fans ensured that there was a nasty taste left after a successful evening for Erzgebirge Aue.

"We want to apologise to RB Leipzig for this."

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