Danish brewer Carlsberg has posted a 14% rise in net revenues for the first quarter and raised its profit forecast for the full year.

Carlsberg said net revenues for the quarter to the end of March had risen by 14% to DKK8.9bn (US$1.6bn), driven by strong organic growth in developing markets in Eastern Europe and Asia, and a positive contribution from activities in Western Europe. In local currencies, net revenues were up by 15%.

Operating profit reached DKK402m, up by some DKK319m from the corresponding period in 2006.

The brewer said the majority of the profit improvement had come from its operations in Western Europe, which had shown good progress, and from the strong performance at its joint venture with S&N, Baltic Beverages Holding (BBH).

As anticipated, there had been an increase in central costs to support continued business development, the company said.

Carlsberg increased its full-year operating profit forecast by DKK200m to around DKK4.7bn, and said it now expects full-year net profit to be at least DKK2bn, against DKK1.88bn in 2006.