Acquisitions, disposals and investments during the year

Bottling AppletiseBrewery scenePilsener beer

In June 2004 the group’s Chinese associate, China Resources Snow Breweries Ltd (CR Snow), acquired a 90% interest in two brewery plants in China from Anhui Longjin Group Limited for approximately US$34 million, including the assumption of certain liabilities totalling US$10 million. The remaining 10% has been retained by the seller.

On 3 June 2004 SABMiller’s subsidiary, Gardwell Limited (Gardwell) accepted an offer for its shares in Harbin Brewery Group Limited, pursuant to which it received US$211 million in cash. The sale resulted in a substantial profit for Gardwell on the shares, which had been acquired by Gardwell in June 2003.

In June 2004 the group completed the acquisition of a 94.3% interest in the Romanian brewing company S.C. Aurora S.A. (Aurora), with the holding subsequently increased to 99.5%. With effect from 1 January 2005, Aurora was merged into our Romanian subsidiary, Compania de Bere Romania SA.

In July 2004 the group disposed of its remaining 11.2 million shares (or 21% holding) in Edgars Consolidated Stores Ltd (Edcon) by way of a global private placement.

During October 2004, CR Snow acquired Lion Nathan’s Chinese brewing interests in the Yangtze River Delta region, for an equity value of US$71 million and the assumption of approximately US$83 million of debt.

In December 2004 the group acquired all of the outstanding shares in the South African company, Amalgamated Beverage Industries Limited for a total value of approximately US$597 million including costs, pursuant to a scheme of arrangement.

In December 2004 the group announced that it was exercising its right to call for the redemption of all of its US$600 million 4.25% guaranteed convertible bonds that remained in issue. In accordance with the terms upon which those bonds were issued, all of the bondholders (or the Trustee acting on their behalf) elected to convert their bonds into the company’s ordinary shares, which resulted in the company issuing a further 69,057,697 ordinary shares and all of the bonds being cancelled.

In February 2005 the group acquired a further 39.8% interest in Birra Peroni S.p.A. for a cash consideration of US$205 million, including costs. This acquisition takes SABMiller’s interest in Birra Peroni to 99.8%.

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