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SABMiller announces further Black Economic Empowerment transaction

13 May 2006

Ref 16/2006

The South African Breweries Limited (SAB), a wholly owned subsidiary of SABMiller plc, today announced that it has finalised, subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions, the sale of 40% of its crown (bottle top) manufacturer, Coleus Packaging (Pty) Limited (Coleus), to the Nokusa Consortium, led by Nokusa Investments (Pty) Limited, in a Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) transaction.  Nokusa will be involved at a strategic level as well as an operational level and will have the right to appoint two directors to the five member board.  The value of the gross assets disposed of by SAB  is approximately R30 million (US$4.9 million).

Coleus, which is South Africa’s biggest producer of metal bottle closures, produces around 4.9 billion crowns per annum for the brewing and bottling industries in Southern Africa, and had a turnover of approximately R132 million (US$21.5 million), for the year to 31 March 2005.  SAB acquired Coleus in 2003, in a transaction whereby SAB committed itself to both significantly improving Coleus’ manufacturing plant and to a 40% BEE transaction, within a specified timeframe.

Since 2003, SAB has invested R16 million (US$2.6 million) in improving the performance of the Coleus business, including significant investment in new equipment and training to develop local skills. Under SAB’s ownership, factory efficiencies have risen from 50% to a current average of 76%, with a record high of 80% in March this year. As part of the BEE transaction, SAB has committed to purchasing its crown supply from Coleus, cementing a positive future for the business.

Tony van Kralingen, Managing Director of SAB commented:
“We are delighted to announce another BEE transaction with an experienced consortium. Nokusa members are highly skilled professionals who have a diverse range of skills and expertise in the FMCG, packaging and manufacturing industries, as well as experience in operating in the rest of Africa. They will be an excellent partner for the business and we look forward to working with them.”

Moss Hadebe, Chairman of the consortium added:
“Nokusa demonstrated that it offered the most attractive overall package and provided the best fit with Coleus.  We welcome our partnership with SAB and believe that our input into operations and strategy formulation will benefit all parties. This direct strategic and operational involvement sets a welcome trend in BEE transactions.”

Ends

Notes to editors:

SABMiller
SABMiller plc is one of the world’s largest brewers with brewing interests or distribution agreements in over 60 countries across five continents. The group’s brands include premium international beers such as Miller Genuine Draft, Peroni Nastro Azzurro and Pilsner Urquell, as well as an exceptional range of market leading local brands.  Outside the USA, SABMiller plc is also one of the largest bottlers of Coca-Cola products in the world.
 
In the year ended 31 March 2005, the group reported US$2,194 million pre-tax profit and a turnover of US$14,543 million on a UK GAAP basis.  SABMiller plc is listed on the London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.

Nokusa
Nokusa Investments (Pty) Ltd is an investment company led by six black entrepreneurs with extensive experience in managing large-scale businesses. The consortium also includes groups of historically disadvantaged South Africans including Shandura, which has 13 professional women beneficiaries, Izindophi Community Project, a rural women’s grouping from Kwazulu-Natal with 11 beneficiaries and the Kapano Disabled Movement with 29 members.

This announcement is available on www.sabmiller.com

High resolution images are available for the media to view and download free of charge from: www.vismedia.co.uk

Enquiries:  
  
SABMiller plc  
Tel: +44 20 7659 0100
  
Sue Clark Director of Corporate Affairs 
Tel: +44 20 7659 0184
  
Gary Leibowitz 

Senior Vice President, Investor Relations 
Tel: +44 20 7659 0174
  
Nigel Fairbrass 
Head of Media Relations 
Tel: +44 20 7659 0105
  
This announcement does not constitute an offer to sell or issue or the solicitation of an offer to buy or acquire securities of SABMiller plc (the "Company") or any of its affiliates in any jurisdiction or an inducement to enter into investment activity.
This document includes "forward-looking statements".  These statements may contain the words "anticipate", "believe", "intend", "estimate", "expect" and words of similar meaning.  All statements other than statements of historical facts included in this announcement, including, without limitation, those regarding the Company's financial position, business strategy, plans and objectives of management for future operations (including development plans and objectives relating to the Company's products and services) are forward-looking statements.  These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that could cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.  These forward-looking statements are based on numerous assumptions regarding the Company's present and future business strategies and the environment in which the Company will operate in the future.  These forward-looking statements speak only as at the date of this announcement.  The Company expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to disseminate any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained in this announcement to reflect any change in the Company's expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.
Any information contained in this announcement on the price at which the Company's securities have been bought or sold in the past, or on the yield on such securities, should not be relied upon as a guide to future performance.

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