• Lager volumes up 3% in Q3
  • Africa, China drive growth
  • US, Lat Am continue decline from H1
SABMillers beer volumes rise by 3% in Q3

SABMiller's beer volumes rise by 3% in Q3

Strong demand for SABMiller's lagers in Africa and China has helped the brewer to increase global volume sales in its fiscal third quarter.

SABMiller today (18 January) reported beer sales up by 3% in volume for the three months to the end of December. The performance built on a 1% rise in volumes in the first-half.

"Continued improvement in economic conditions in many of our emerging markets assisted our volume performance," said the Miller Genuine Draft brewer. It said that its third-quarter profits were in-line with expectations, but did not disclose figures.

China and Africa drove the group's performance during the third quarter, with volumes in those markets up by 16% and 12% respectively on the same period of last year. Zimbabwe constituted one third of the group's volume increase in Africa, while volumes also rose by 3% in South Africa, which is a separate business division.

These regions continued to offset sluggish demand for beer across Europe and the Americas, although the Peroni Nastro Azzurro brewer reported some signs of improvement in these markets. Sales to retailers in the US slipped by 2.5% in volume for the three months, compared to a 3% drop in the first-half.  

Volumes were flat in Europe in the third quarter after falling 5% in the first six months of the year. In Latin America, SABMiller continued to face the backlash of a tax rise on alcohol in Colombia at the beginning of calendar 2010. Its volumes for the region fell by 1% in the third quarter and were down by 5% in Colombia.

For the first nine months of the year, SABMiller's lager volume sales rose by 2% globally. Soft drinks volumes rose by 5% for the quarter and by 3% for the nine months.

For the full announcement, click here.