SABMiller will release its second-quarter and half-year results on Thursday (18 October)

SABMiller will release its second-quarter and half-year results on Thursday (18 October)

SABMiller will release its second-quarter and half-year results on Thursday (22 November). Here, just-drinks takes a look at the highs and lows for the brewer in the three months to the end of September.

  • SABMiller's JV with Chinese brewer CR Snow puts it ahead of the pack for growth in the country, an analyst said in July. And if China is to account for about 40% of global beer volume growth in the next four years, as the analyst predicts, ahead of the pack is a great place to be.
  • On 26 July, a shareholder backlash against SABMiller's executive pay spilled over into the public sphere. SABMiller played down the revolt, which saw 23% reject the firm's directors' renumeration report at an AGM.
  • An Indian state Anti-Corruption Bureau issued notices to SABMiller and other drinks firms in August, accusing them of banding together and selling brands both above and below the Maximum Retail Price. The agency said incentives such as cash discounts and holiday packages were handed out to members of state's liquor syndicate.
  • Still in India, SABMiller lodged an appeal in August against plans by the Indian government to retrospectively charge the brewer capital gains tax over its acquisition of Foster's Indian beer operations. India's tax authorities are claiming US$42m over SABMiller's acquisition of the licence to produce Foster's lager in India in 2006. 
  • Meanwhile, in Nigeria, SABMiller cut the ribbon on a US$100m brewery that will see it challenge Heineken and Diageo for domination in the country's beer market. Heineken bought five Nigerian breweries last year while Diageo is to spend GBP225m (US$366.6m) to increase brewing capacity in the country.
  • At the start of September, SABMiller turned its attention to Australian beer brand Victoria Bitter, which lost its market leadership status in the country earlier this year. Its solution? A return to the beer's original 4.9% abv after it was cut to 4.6% in 2009. No news yet on how the change is affecting sales.

In SABMiller's Q1,

  • Group sales in three months to end of June were up 8% on a year earlier
  • Overall lager volumes rose by 5% year-on-year
  • Group revenue per hectolitre increased by 3%, but Western Europe volumes were  “depressed”