Anadolu Efes, the Turkish beer and soft drinks giant, has posted a slide in half-year profits, hurt by a fall in pre-tax profits in the company's international beer division.

For the six-month period ended 30 June, group profits dropped to TRY211.2m (US$140m) from TRY228.9m in the comparable period of 2008, the firm said late yesterday (26 August).

The company's international beer operations, Efes Breweries International, posted net losses of TRY24.4m, compared to TRY16.7m in the previous year.

Despite this, Anadolu Efes' net sales reached TRY1.96bn, up 10% year-on-year, largely due to local currency price increases. Sales volumes, including beer and soft drink volumes, increased 4% for the period.

Consolidated EBITDA increased 13.4% over the prior year to reach TRY519.6m.

"Due to the continued global macroeconomic challenges, we maintain our more conservative outlook for the markets we are operating in," said Alejandro Jimenez, president of Efes Beer Group.

"We expect our sales volume in Turkey to grow by low single digits in 2009, due to the macroeconomic difficulties and a very strong base effect. On the other hand, in international operations, we expect to outperform the beer markets we are operating in."

Earlier this week, Efes Breweries International reported a decline beer sales for the first half of 2009, hit by a shrinking Russian beer market.

Volume sales for the six months to the end of June fell by 4.6% to 6.7m hectolitres, compared to the same period of last year.