Brewing plant in Khirdalan belonging to the industrial association “Baku-Pivo” was put into commission in 1969. In those years, it was one of the six biggest brewing enterprises in the USSR. In 1997, the plant passed into the ownership of a French concern Group Castel, with large-scale reconstruction completed 2 years later. Official opening of the renovated plant in 2000 was attended by the president of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev.
Baltika Breweries, part of the Calsberg Group and long-term leader of the Russian beer market, supplying its products to the Azerbaijan Republic since 2000, gave positive assessment to the growth of the beer market in the Republic and made a decision to purchase the brewing plant in Khirdalan. In May 2008, Baltika Breweries and Brasseries Internationales Holding (Eastern) Ltd (BIH Eastern) signed an agreement on the purchase of the “Baku-Castel” Breweries. After the approval of the deal by the anti-monopoly agencies of Azerbaijan, the plant became a part of the Baltika Breweries, and from the beginning of 2009 was renamed into “Baltika-Baku”.
Baltika’s priority task was to renovate the plant in order to launch manufacture of Baltika and Arsenalnoye beers by the beginning of the new season. By May, 2009, it was necessary to adjust the site to the highest quality standards and technological requirements obligatory for all plants of the Baltika Breweries. On May 20, 2009, ceremonial opening of the “Baltika-Baku” plant was held after the reconstruction. Upgrade of “Baltika-Baku” was one of the biggest investment projects in food industry in the recent period in the Azerbaijan Republic. Total amount of investments upon the completion of the investment program was about USD 20 mln.
The brewing line, fermentation and filtration rooms were reconstructed, bottling line was reequipped and a line for the filling into PET-packaging was installed. All the equipment newly installed at the “Baltika-Baku” plant was produced by such leading global companies as Krones AG, Gea Brewery Systems Gmbh, Filtrox AG, Ring Crown, Pall Gmbh etc. The upgrade allowed to not only significantly increase the quality of local brands, but also to manufacture a wide range of wellknown sorts of “Baltika” and Carlsberg Group at “Baltika-Baku” Brewery’s facilities. At present, production capacity of the plant is 10 mln dekaliters per year, and the company’s production is sold in 12,5 thousand points of sale in Azerbaijan.
Total amount of the company’s investments into the development of the factory is more than AZN 40 mln. The major event in terms of the company’s investments into the fixed assets in 2014 was the installation of silages for the storage of grain, as well as bright beer tanks for the storage of finished products. These innovations allow the company to improve quality of its products, installation of silages allows to improve storage conditions of grain and ensure full compliance with high standards of the Carlsberg Group.
Annual assignments by “Baltika-Baku” to the budget are more than AZN 20 mln, i.e. more than AZN 70 mln since the start of its activity (according to the results of 2014).
“Baltika-Baku” tries to use all kinds of natural resources and energy sources as carefully as possible, and applies programs which allow to preserve environment, e.g. it has been already long years that the company uses returnable glass containers. Recyclable glass containers constitute about 20-25% of the total amount of bottles used in the production. Moreover, the Company contributes to the development of agriculture. Thus, spent grains formed as a by-product of brewing is sold for a token payment to agricultural companies which use it as useful supplementary feed for farm livestock.
Products of “Baltika-Baku” take 75% of the Azerbaijan market (2015) and are presented in the market with the following brands: Xırdalan®, Tuborg®, Baltika 7®, Baltika 0®, Baltika 9®, Xırdalan Draft®, Kuler®, Əfsanə®, Zhigulevskoye Firmennoye®.
Due to its continuous improvement, “Baltika-Baku” brands were rewarded both in the country and abroad. The Company’s latest achievement was the honorary first place in the contest among manufacturers of food products in the “Quality in the production of food products” nomination, held in March in Madrid.
The Company employs more than 260 people and about 400 people indirectly (distributors, agencies, contractors). “Baltika-Baku” carries out a socially-oriented policy regarding the personnel. The Company constantly gives attention to conditions of work at the company from the workbench setup, payment for food, provision of working cloths up to the reconstruction of the locker room and modernization of the canteen.
As a socially responsible company, “Baltika-Baku” supports social programs aimed at the development of the Absheron district and renders charity assistance to different social organizations, e.g. in 2015, with the Company’s financial support and in cooperation with the National Olympic Committee there was constructed a public sports ground in the National Park which can be used even by people with disabilities.