Pricing at Systembolaget

The price for a beverage at Systembolaget has several components.

The price a customer pay for a bottle, can or bag-in-box has several components.

Taxes – alcohol tax and VAT – usually make up the bulk of the price. On average, taxes account for just over half of the price you pay.

Price components (average product)

Alcohol tax: 37 %

Supplier: 32 %

VAT: 20 %

Systembolaget: 11 %

The shares differ between different beverage categories, which mainly depends on different alcohol taxes.

Let us look at the different steps in Systembolaget’s pricing model to see how the price is set.

The same rules apply to all suppliers and brands – this is an important starting point and a requirement from the EU. This means that we never negotiate prices for alcoholic beverages with our suppliers.

What is a supplier?

A supplier is a Swedish company that is approved to supply beverages to Systembolaget. A supplier can import beverages or manufacture them itself. 

How the price is calculated

Let us illustrate the steps from an example: A bottle of wine (750 ml, 13% alcohol) that has a retail price of SEK 99:

Step 1: Purchase price

The supplier sets a price Systembolaget. This is Systembolaget’s purchase price.

  • The purchase price should cover the supplier’s costs and provide a profit.
  • It should also cover the compensation to the beverage producer, as well as any suppliers of, for example, grapes and bottles.

Example
The supplier’s price to Systembolaget: SEK 47.01.

Step 2: Systembolaget's mark-up

We calculate our mark-up on the purchase price. This needs to cover our costs, which include salaries, premises and IT systems, and the required return that the state imposes on Systembolaget. Systembolaget has to cover its own costs and this is done through the mark-up. 

Systembolaget applies two mark-ups

General mark-up
This is always 17 percent of the purchase price.
In money terms, it will therefore vary depending on the purchase price.

Mark-up per package
Wine: SEK 4.92 (bag-in-box, full sized bottle, cardboard, PET). 
Smaller sized bottles: SEK 2.46. 
This is to ensure a good selection of smaller sized bottles.
Spirits: SEK 5.52
Cider and Ready to Drink beverages:
 SEK 1.44
Beer: 84 öre
Non-alcoholic beer, cider and Ready to Drink beverages: SEK 2.17  
Non-alcoholic wine, must and other non-alcoholic beverages: SEK 5.21.

Example

General mark-up SEK 7.99 (17 % of SEK 47.01)
Per package mark-up: SEK 4.92 (wine, full sized bottle)
Total price: SEK 59.92

Step 3: Alcohol tax

Alcohol tax comes on top of this.

The alcohol tax is different for different beverages and is calculated in SEK. (link in Swedish)

Example
The alcohol tax on 750 ml of wine is SEK 19.64 (alcohol tax SEK 26.18/litre)
Total price: SEK 79.56.

Step 4: Deposit (if applicable)

Any deposit comes on top of this. This applies to recyclable glass bottles and certain cans and PET bottles.

Example
There is no deposit in our example. 
Total price: SEK 79.56.

Step 5: VAT

VAT is added on top of the price.

Example
VAT is SEK 19.89 (25% of SEK 79.56) 
Total price: SEK 99.45.

Step 6: Rounding

The price is rounded. 
Wine, spirits and non-alcoholic wine is rounded to the whole krona. All other beverages are rounded to an even ten öre.

Example
SEK 99.45 is rounded down to a whole krona.
Consumer price: SEK 99.

Who decides the final consumer price?

In most cases, the supplier decides the final price. However, we often specify a ceiling or a price range when we purchase a beverage for our set range, for example SEK 90 to 99.