SABMiller plc Trading Update
16 April 2008
SABMiller plc today issues the following update on trading for the 12 months to 31 March 2008. The calculation of organic growth rates shown below excludes volumes for acquired businesses for the first 12 months after an acquisition. The group's lager volume growth was 11% for the year with organic growth of 7%. Revenue grew by some 16%, benefiting from price increases and mix improvements, which have offset the impact of higher input costs. The underlying performance of the group has been good and was at the upper end of management's expectations. The results have benefited from successful revenue management and enhanced productivity as well as favourable exchange rates in some of our major countries. Latin America, lager volumes were up 5% for the year, with a subdued growth rate in the final quarter following mid-teen growth in the comparative period. In Colombia, full year volumes have grown 4%, reflecting slower trading conditions in the second half and tough comparatives, but good price and mix increases have been achieved and our market facing initiatives continue to deliver benefits. In Peru, volumes ended up 8% in a market that remains highly competitive.
Europe recorded full year organic growth of 8%. The final quarter showed satisfactory growth despite a particularly strong comparative period which had benefited from good weather. Pricing and mix improvements boosted revenue. Growth remained strong in Romania and the year ended with volumes up 28%, driven by the Timisoreana brand's new PET packaging. Good organic domestic volume growth of 10% was achieved in Poland, reflecting continued strong growth of Lech and Zubr, while in Russia our portfolio of premium brands grew by 14%. Domestic volumes in the Czech Republic ended the year marginally above the prior year.
In North America, Miller's full year domestic sales to retailers (STRs) grew by 3.1% after adjusting for the extra trading day in the current year (3.5% unadjusted) and were up 0.7% on an organic adjusted basis. Trading-day adjusted STRs of Miller Lite were up 1.1% for the full year (1.5% unadjusted). On a similar basis, annual STRs of the worthmore brand portfolio, including Sparks, grew 49% - and now represent 5.8% of the total portfolio - driven by the successful national launch of Miller Chill and the strong double digit growth of Peroni Nastro Azzurro and Leinenkugel's. Miller's domestic net revenue per barrel increased by 4.0% for the full year, reflecting good pricing, reductions in promotions and favourable brand mix. Africa and Asia delivered organic growth of 15% in lager volumes for the year. In China, CR Snow further increased its market leadership with rapid expansion of the Snow brand. Organic growth in China was subdued in the final quarter following severe weather conditions, growth of over 30% in the comparative quarter and significant price increases. In India organic volumes grew by almost 20% for the year. In Africa (excluding Zimbabwe) on an organic basis lager volumes grew strongly, having accelerated in the final quarter, and ended the year up 6%. Strong volume growth was recorded in Botswana, following renovation of the St Louis brand and the introduction of new returnable bottles, and good volume growth was also achieved in Tanzania and Mozambique. South Africa Beverages' full year lager volumes were level with the prior year, although down during the final quarter (over a strong comparative quarter). This is a satisfactory full year performance in view of the expected volume loss following the termination of a licensed premium brand with which we now compete. Soft drinks volumes grew by 4% for the year, impacted in the final quarter by carbon dioxide shortages and cycling growth of over 30% in the comparable quarter.
About SABMiller plc
SABMiller plc is one of the world's largest brewers with brewing interests or distribution agreements in over 60 countries across six 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 2007, the group reported US$3,154 million adjusted pre-tax profit andrevenue of US$18,620 million. SABMiller plc is listed on the London and Johannesburg stock exchanges. This announcement is available on the company website: www.sabmiller.comHigh resolution images are available for the media to view and download free of charge from www.sabmiller.com or www.newscast.co.uk
|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 7799 894265|
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