23 September 2004
SABMiller plc Trading Update - September 2004
London and Johannesburg, 23 September 2004. Prior to the announcement of its
interim results due in November and ahead of the Miller investor presentations
on September 27 and 28, SABMiller plc has provided an update to the trading
statement made at the Company's AGM on 29 July 2004.
Group financial performance in the five-month period to 31 August 2004 was
strong, and earnings growth was recorded in all of our businesses. For the same
period, the group's organic lager volume growth was over 4%.
In North America, Miller's US domestic sales to retailers (STRs) increased by 2%
for the period to mid September, with growth in the Miller Lite franchise being
partially offset by reductions in other brands. Financial performance has
benefited from favourable brand mix and price increases.
While beer volumes in Central America remain largely unchanged, volumes of
carbonated soft drinks (CSD) were some 5% below prior year, reflecting
continuing price-based competition in the market. The business continues to
benefit from previous cost rationalisation activities and selective price
increases in both beer and CSDs.
Our Europe business produced satisfactory results, with organic lager growth of
3%. In addition to continued volume growth in Russia and Romania, the second
quarter's volume trends in the key markets of Poland and Czech are better than
in the first quarter, partially offset by weakness in Italy and Hungary.
The Africa and Asia business delivered a pleasing increase in organic lager
volume of 9% over the prior year, reflecting growth in China against a
comparable period impacted by SARS, and growth in key African markets.
In South Africa, beer volumes have grown by some 4%, with further gains in share
of the total liquor market. At ABI, CSD volumes were up by 7% over the prior
year. Strong operating performances have been enhanced by favourable currency
Notes to editors:
SABMiller plc is one of the world's largest brewers, with 2003/04 lager volumes
in excess of 137 million hectolitres. It has a brewing presence in over 40
countries across four continents and a portfolio of strong brands and leading
market shares in many of the countries in which it has brewing operations.
Outside the USA, SABMiller plc is one of the largest bottlers of Coca-Cola
products in the world.
In the year ended 31 March 2004, the group generated US$1,391 million pre-tax
profit from a turnover of US$12,645 million. SABMiller plc is listed on the
London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.
SABMiller plc Tel: +44 20 7659 0100
Sue Clark Director of Corporate Affairs Tel: +44 20 7659 0184
Gary Leibowitz Vice President, Investor Relations Mob: +44 7717 428540
Mat Dunn Investor Relations Senior Manager Tel: +44 20 7659 0194
Nigel Fairbrass Head of Corporate Communications Tel: +44 20 7659 0105
Mob: +44 7799 894265
This announcement is available on the company website. www.sabmiller.com
This announcement does not constitute an offer to sell or issue or the
solicitation of an offer to buy or acquire securities of SABMiller plc (the
'Company') or any of its affiliates in any jurisdiction or an inducement to
enter into investment activity.
This document includes 'forward-looking statements'. These statements may
contain the words 'anticipate', 'believe', 'intend', 'estimate', 'expect' and
words of similar meaning. All statements other than statements of historical
facts included in this announcement, including, without limitation, those
regarding the Company's financial position, business strategy, plans and
objectives of management for future operations (including development plans and
objectives relating to the Company's products and services) are forward-looking
statements. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks,
uncertainties and other important factors that could cause the actual results,
performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from
future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such
forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on
numerous assumptions regarding the Company's present and future business
strategies and the environment in which the Company will operate in the future.
These forward-looking statements speak only as at the date of this announcement.
The Company expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to disseminate
any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained in this
announcement to reflect any change in the Company's expectations with regard
thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such
statement is based.
Any information contained in this announcement on the price at which the
Company's securities have been bought or sold in the past, or on the yield on
such securities, should not be relied upon as a guide to future performance.
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