just On Call: Coca-Cola Amatil keeps eye on future in brewing
Coca-Cola Amatil said it hasn't discounted completely going back into brewing
Speaking at the firm's earnings conference yesterday (20 February), managing director Terry Davis told attendees that CCA is still keen on going back into brewing. "That's not a decision that we need to make now, we've got a few options available to us," Davis said.
"Watch this space I guess, we certainly have high expectations to be back in the beer business in Australia at the end of next year," he added.
As part of the deal to its stake in Pacific Beverages to SABMiller, CCA has the right to acquire Foster's Group's Australasian spirit and spirit RTD business, Australian non-acoholic business, and Fijian Brewery, liquor and non-acoholic business.
Davis said the company expects to purchase brands from Foster's, which SABMiller acquired at the end of 2011. Asked whether the company is under any restrictions to enter into discussions with beer owners, the managing director said it can speak to "whoever it wishes".
"We believe we've achieved a very strong price for our shareholding without reducing any opportunities at all to grow a meaningful revenue stream from alcoholic beverages," Davis said.
Yesterday, CCA reported an increase in full-year net profits, boosted by a one-time gain from exiting its beer joint-venture with SABMilller.
Net profits for the 12 months to the end of December amounted to AUD591.8m (US$630.8m), a 19% improvement on 2010. The figure included a AUD59.8m one-off, reflecting the sale of the firm's 50% stake in Pacific Beverages to SABMiller, minus restructuring costs at SPC Artmona.
For many observers, yesterday's speculation linking Anheuser-Busch InBev to a move for control of Grupo Modelo has come a bit sooner than expected. But, it has always been expected....
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