Net profit of Heineken N.V. for the first half of 2000, grew by 19% to EUR 249m, an increase of EUR 39m compared to the first half of 1999.

Higher beer sales, an improved sales mix, better selling prices, the positive results of newly consolidated companies and a higher exchange rate for the US dollar, all contributed to the growth in net profit.

Operating profit as a percentage of net turnover was 10.6% during the first half of 2000 versus 10.4% during the first half of 1999.

Net profit per share in the first half of 2000 rose from EUR 0.67 to EUR 0.79.

Net turnover grew by 15% from EUR 3,390m to EUR 3,893m, an increase of EUR 503m.

Group volume, in the first half of 2000, including new consolidations, rose by 15% to 36.2m hectolitres compared to the same period in 1999.

Sales volume of Heineken beer increased worldwide by 7% to 10.5m hectolitres. Sales volume of Amstel beer also rose by 7% to 5.2m hectolitres.

Higher sales volumes were realised in many countries in Europe, Asia Pacific and Africa. In the US, sales volume increased by 12%. In Poland, however, sales volume was lower due to integration activities.

On September 26, 2000, an interim dividend of EUR 0.16 per share with a par value of EUR 2.27 (NLG 5.00) will become payable. The ex-dividend date for Heineken shares is September 18.

For 2000 as a whole, Heineken N.V. expect growth in net profit to exceed 15%, in spite of the less favourable summer weather. This growth in net profit arises from higher autonomous beer sales, an improving sales mix, positive results of the newly consolidated companies and the higher exchange rate of the US dollar.

In the first six months of 2000 net turnover increased by EUR 503m to EUR 3,893m, a growth of 15% compared to the first half of 1999. 8% of this growth was the result of the first time consolidation of a number of companies, of which Grupo Cruzcampo in Spain was the most important one. Cruzcampo has been fully consolidated as of February 1. Following the merger with El Aguila, we have a majority shareholding of 79% in the new company, Heineken Espana. Excluding new consolidations, higher beer sales resulted in an increase in net turnover of 4%. In addition, improvement in sales mix and higher selling prices had a positive impact on net turnover of 2%. Changes in Exchange rates, in particular the higher US dollar rate, added a further 1% to net turnover.

In the first half of 2000, group volume rose by 15% to 36.2m hectolitres compared to the same period in 1999. Approximately 65% of this increase resulted from the first time consolidation of Grupo Cruzcampo in Spain, Gemer and Martiner in Slovakia, Pivara Skopje and Macedonia and Shanghai Mila Brewery in China. In addition, autonomous sales volume grew in our operating companies in the Netherlands, France and Spain. However, sales volume in Poland was lower than in the first of 1999 due to integration activities and increased competition.

In nearly all European markets Heineken N.V. were able to maintain or even improve their market share.

In the United States, beer sales increased by 12%. In Africa and Asia Pacific sales volume also improved. The worldwide volume of Heineken beer increased by 7% to 10.5m hectolitres. This growth resulted mainly from increased beer sales in the United States, France, Spain, the Netherlands and Italy. Sales volume of Amstel also increased by 7% to 5.2m hectolitres, in particular in Spain, the Netherlands, Greece, Thailand and Africa.

Operating profit rose by 16% from EUR 353m to EUR 411m. Higher sales volumes, first time consolidations, higher selling prices and improved sales mix and favourable exchange rates had a significant positive impact. Higher expenses for packaging and energy set off the lower costs of raw material. Excluding new consolidations, higher marketing and selling expenses and personnel costs restrained the growth of operating profit. Marketing and selling expenses as a percentage of net turnover rose from 15.0% to 15.3%

Operating profit as a percentage of net turnover was 10.6% compared to 10.4% in the first half of 1999.

Earnings of non-consolidated participations amounted to EUR 22m, an improvement of EUR 8m compared to the same period of last year. This was the result of increased activities in Nigeria and improved profitability of a number of participations in the Far East.

Interest charges increased by EUR 13m to EUR 33m. This increase was caused by the financing of the Grupo Cruzcampo acquisition through a loan amounting to EUR 278m. Moreover, additional loans and higher interest rates in Poland lead to higher interest charges.

The average tax burden for the first half of 2000 decreases to 37.8% compared to 39.6% in 1999. This drop resulted mainly from the use of tax losses carried forward in Europe.

Net profit for the first half of 2000, grew by 19% to EUR 249m, an increase of EUR 39m compared to the same period in 1999. Net profit per share in the first half of 2000 rose from EUR 0.67 to EUR 0.79.

In the first six months of 2000, a net amount of EUR 196 million was invested in tangible fixed assets and EUR 944m in financial fixed assets and consolidation participations.

Shareholders' equity decreases by EUR502m to EUR 2,116m. Net profit, after the interim dividend, contributed EUR 200m, however goodwill of EUR 710m was charged to equity. On balance, revaluation and charges in exchange rates had a positive impact of EUR 8m on shareholders' equity.

As a consequence of the acquisitions of Grupo Cruzcampo in Spain, provisions and long-term debt rose. Also as result of acquisitions, cash balances declined compared with December 31, 1999.

Cash flow from operating activities amounted to EUR 282m in the first half of 2000 compared to EUR 237m last year. This increase is mainly the result of a higher operating profit, partly offset by an increase in working capital.

For 2000 as a whole, Heineken N.V. expect growth in net profit to exceed 15%, in spite of the less favourable summer weather. This growth in net profit arises from higher autonomous beer sales, an improving sales mix, positive results of the newly consolidated companies and the higher exchange rate of the US dollar.

On September 26, 2000, an interim dividend of EUR 0.16 per share with a par value of EUR 2.27 (NLG 5.00) will become payable. The ex-dividend date for Heineken shares is September 18.