• Beer, spirits lift sales
  • Net profits down on tough comp
  • Sells brewery assets to subsidiary
Beer puts San Miguel Corp in high spirits

Beer puts San Miguel Corp in high spirits

San Miguel Corp's core beer, spirits and food businesses drove the group to strong rises in operating profits and sales for the first nine months of 2010.

San Miguel Corp said today (12 November) that it increased operating profits by 50% to PHP19.7bn (US$453m) for the nine months to the end of September. Net sales rose by 28% to PHP161.8bn.

Strong performances across beer, spirits and food drove the results, said the Philippines-based group, which has spent the last couple of years seeking to diversify into infrastructure and heavy industry. Partly as a result of this strategy, net profits for the nine months were PHP12.7bn, compared to PHP57bn in the same period of 2009 and PHP20bn in 2008. In both of those years, one-off gains inflated earnings.

San Miguel said that domestic beer sales at its San Miguel Brewery division rose by 9% for the nine-month period, to PHP40.1bn. Operating profits rose by 20% to PHP13.5bn, with volume sales up by 3%, reported San Miguel Brewery, which is 48%-owned by Japan's Kirin Holdings.

Sales at San Miguel Corp's international beer arm dipped due to "difficult market conditions in South China", the firm said.

In its spirits business, Ginebra San Miguel, volumes rose by 7% and net sales by 18% to PHP16.6bn for the nine months. Operating profits increased by 36% on the same period of 2009, boosted by lower molasses costs.   

Separately, San Miguel Corp announced that it has completed the sale of brewery land assets in the Philippines to San Miguel Brewery for PHP6.89bn. San Miguel Corp retains majority control of San Miguel Brewery, although it said earlier this year that it could divest control in order to raise funds for its move into other industries.

San Miguel Corp did not disclose trading figures for the third quarter.

For the full results statement, click here.