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CHILE: H1 profits rise at Compania Cervecerias Unidas

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Chilean beverage giant Compania Cervecerias Unidas (CCU) has reported a 35% rise in net profits for the first half of 2009, boosted by a stake sale to Nestle Waters.

Net profits for the six months to the end of June rose by 35.7% to CLP64.5bn (US$121m), compared to CLP47.5bn in the same period of 2008, said CCU late last week.

Profits in the second quarter leapt by 128.7%, following the sale of a 29.9% equity stake in Aguas CCU Nestlé to Nestlé Waters Chile, the firm added.

Net sales for the six months rose by 7.7% to CLP373.4bn, on the back of a 4% volume sales rise, although operating profits slipped by 3.5% for the half-year, to CLP56bn.

"With unfavorable economic indicators, we were able to increase sales by volume in almost all segments in which we participate, except for spirits and beer in Argentina," said the group.

CCU's 2008 volume sales rose by more than 10%.


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