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SABMiller’s UK brands show strong growth

18 November 2010

Popularity of the ‘world beer' category drives 25% growth.
SABMiller announces that its UK subsidiary, Miller Brands, has delivered lager volume growth of 25% on an organic basis in the first six months of the financial year to September 2010.  The Peroni Nastro Azzurro brand maintained its momentum, with growth of 22%.

In contrast to many brewers which saw a slump in demand post the FIFA World Cup, Miller Brands has maintained its strong performance, creating substantial value for on and off-trade retailers.  Its portfolio, which includes Pilsner Urquell, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Lech, Tyskie, Miller Genuine Draft and most recently a Czech import called Kozel, now has a 34% market share of the ‘world beer' category in the UK.

Growth in the emerging world beer category reflects increasing consumer interest in the provenance of brands, and is part of a global trend favouring craft and import products in the super-premium beer segment.  In the United States, craft beer volumes grew by 7.2%1  in calendar year 2009, in an overall beer industry which declined by 2.22%. In the UK, cask-conditioned or real ale is also outperforming the market for the third year running.

Miller Brands Managing Director, Nick Miller, says:

"Brands in the world beer category, such as Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Pilsner Urquell and Kozel, have proven extremely popular with the discerning 25-34 year old and are helping to challenge some of the negative stereotypes that have been associated with beer in recent years.

"Many of the consumers who are new to this category are also experimenting with different flavours in products such as coffee and chocolate, demonstrating a curiosity born out of a broader range of international experiences."

Miller Brands recently launched the 4% ABV Czech lager, Kozel, into the UK market. The business carried out extensive research to establish exactly which brand would be the best fit and Kozel was chosen for its combination of authentic Czech taste and genuinely distinctive provenance.

SABMiller's US operation, MillerCoors, recently announced the formation of Tenth and Blake, an independent company to manage the sale and distribution of its portfolio of craft beers and imports - two segments growing in the otherwise flat beer industry.

1 Based on estimates by The Brewers Association of brewers producing less than 2 million barrels p.a.
2 According to The Beer Institute

Notes to editors

SABMiller plc is one of the world's largest brewers with brewing interests and distribution agreements across six continents. The group's wide portfolio of brands includes premium international beers such as Pilsner Urquell, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Miller Genuine Draft and Grolsch, as well as leading local brands such as Aguila, Castle, Miller Lite, Snow and Tyskie.  SABMiller is also one of the world's largest bottlers of Coca-Cola products.

In the year ended 31 March 2010, the group reported US$3,803 million adjusted pre-tax profit and group revenue of US$26,350 million. SABMiller plc is listed on the London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.

Miller Brands is the UK and Ireland subsidiary of SABMiller, one of the world's largest brewers. Miller Brands has responsibility for the development of SABMiller's international premium brands across the UK and Ireland; these include Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Pilsner Urquell and Miller Genuine Draft. Through its consistent pricing and distribution discipline, supplemented by engaging marketing activities, Miller Brands is bringing value back into the beer category. Sales are currently growing in excess of 20% year on year in a declining market and this is increasingly recognised and referenced by retailers. More information can be found at

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SABMiller plcTel: +44 20 7659 0100
Bianca ShevlinCorporate Media Relations Manager, SABMillerTel: +44 20 7659 0172

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