Interbrew, the Belgian brewing giant, is planning further steps to increase its focus on continued organic growth, the comany said in a statement today.

As of 1 April 2002, Interbrew#;s operating structure will be transformed to become an "as flat as possible organisation model".

The company said: "The enhanced operating structure will allow Interbrew#;s management to provide the highest levels of service, be one of the best performing and cost effective international brewers and accelerate the organic growth of its operations and brands."

The statement continued: "Interbrew#;s Operating Committee, under the leadership of the chief operating officer, will pay particular attention to leveraging these core strengths. In addition to continued focus on financial planning as well as EBIT and EBITDA growth, the Operating Committee will pay particular attention to market share increase, growth in the mix of speciality brands, new product development and innovation, return on invested capital, production efficiencies, standardisation of operating systems and processes, customer service and satisfaction measurement, knowledge management and exchange of best practices."

To help achieve these aims, Interbrew#;s operating structure will evolve to an organisational model providing areas of international expertise at corporate level (technical, marketing, planning & performance and IS/IT) with all other operating resources being organised at a country level.

The result will be a flat organisation model built around a number of lead countries such as for example Belgium, Canada, USA, UK, Germany, which have the size, scale and critical mass to fully resource and support their business as well as that of a number of smaller countries.

“At the heart of Interbrew#;s business is the depth of its local operations and brands and the breadth of its international speciality portfolio. These are the fundamentals of our operational development.” said Jerry Fowden, chief operating officer of Interbrew. “With our enhanced operating structure, we will increase our focus on organic growth, further strengthen our outstanding performance and improve our capabilities to create shareholder value.”