BELGIUM: InBev posts leap in earnings
InBev has reported a jump in second-quarter profits after rising sales in Latin America and Central and Eastern Europe boosted earnings.
The Belgian brewing giant said today (7 September) that operating profit had leapt 23.2% to EUR817m (US$1.04bn) for the three-month period. Revenues rose 8.3% to EUR3.4bn.
InBev's global beer volumes rose 5.7% thanks largely to growth in Latin America and Central and Eastern Europe.
InBev again saw volumes rise in Brazil but it also enjoyed strong growth across the southern cone countries, including Argentina, Bolivia and Uruguay, thanks to its majority stake in Argentina's largest brewer Quinsa. Net profit from the region jumped 21.3% to EUR439m.
Double-digit volume growth in Russia and the Ukraine drove an 11% jump in volumes across Central and Eastern Europe, while InBev also saw volumes in Romania soar 35%. Net profit from the region jumped almost 40% to EUR144m.
The brewer also enjoyed some respite in Western Europe. InBev, alongside most of its brewing rivals, has found the region challenging as beer consumption slowed but the Stella Artois brewer reported rising earnings and volumes during the quarter.
Volumes were up 2.4% thanks to sales growth in Belgium, Germany and the UK, InBev said. However, the brewer added that its plans to revitalise the performance of its UK business still had "some way to go". InBev's net profit in Western Europe rose 11% to EUR243m thanks to rising sales and the merger of its finance, procurement and export functions.
However, InBev said volume growth had "slowed" in Asia-Pacific. Volumes across the region rose 3.2% after an identical rise in China where, InBev said, growing competition had made the market "more challenging".
InBev's four global brands, Stella Artois, Beck's, Brahma and Leffe, all saw volumes rise. Growth in Germany, the US and Eastern Europe buoyed Beck's sales, while "solid" growth in North America boosted sales of Stella Artois.
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