SABMiller in Asia sales boost

City A.M. Reporter
Brewing giant SABMiller beat forecasts with a three per cent rise in beer volumes in the last three months boosted by growth in Africa and Asia offsetting a fall in Colombia, hit by the heaviest rain for 50 years.

The London-based brewer of Miller Lite, Peroni and Grolsch said y that beer price rises helped boost its quarterly revenue by six per cent and added that its financial performance was in line with its own expectations.

Strong volumes growth in Asia and Africa offset volume dips in Europe and both North and South America in its Oct-Dec third quarter which is heavily dependent on summer beer drinking in the southern markets of South Africa and Latin America.

Investors were looking for slightly higher beer volumes based on a Reuters poll of ten brokers with a consensus for growth of 1.6 percent after the group's first-half (April-Sept) saw a one per cent rise in beer volumes. Second quarter volumes had been up three percent after a one-per cent first quarter fall.

The brewer, which earns over 80 per cent of its profits in emerging markets Colombia, South Africa, Poland and China, is seeing a strong recovery in many of these market, while mature markets are held back by high unemployment hitting consumption.