Pepsi Bottling Group, the largest bottler of PepsiCo products worldwide, today (18 April) reported better-than-expected first quarter earnings on the back of rising volumes in each of its key markets.

PBG posted net income of US$34m for the first three months of the year, translating into earnings per share of US$0.14. The company, in which PepsiCo owns a 43% stake, had forecast earnings of US$0.09-0.11 a share.

Revenues rose 10% to US$2.4bn, buoyed by a 6% rise in sales by volumes. PBG saw volumes rise 6% in North America, by 5% in Mexico and 4% in Europe.

Chairman and CEO John T. Cahill said: "Our US and Canada business closed the quarter with topline growth that exceeded our own expectations. Solid innovation, strong execution in the marketplace and the implementation of our customer service agenda helped fuel this growth, particularly in the US."

He added: "In Mexico, our volume trends for our CSD portfolio improved this quarter and our water business continued to grow at impressive rates. In Europe, we saw softer results in January when parts of Russia and Turkey were hit with record-breaking cold temperatures. In February, however, we were pleased to see volumes rebound, helping our European segment to close the quarter with positive volume results."