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SouthAfricanBrewerie (SAB)

  Print      Mail a friend       Annual reports

Monday 03 December, 2001



South African Breweries PLC
3 December 2001

                          SOUTH AFRICAN BREWERIES PLC

Ref: 10/2001


3 December 2001, London. South African Breweries plc (SAB), the world's
leading brewer in developing markets, today announced two further acquisitions
in China to consolidate its position as the country's second largest brewer.

SAB, through its Chinese joint venture, China Resource Beverages Ltd (CRB),
has acquired a 60% interest in the Euro Dongxihu Brewery in the city of Wuhan,
Hubei Province, central China, from Danone Asia Pte Ltd.   The total book
value of the net assets to be acquired is US$76 million.  The transaction is
subject to various approvals, including regulatory approvals.

Euro Dongxihu Brewery has an installed capacity of around 4 million
hectolitres, of which 3 million is currently utilised.  The company, through
its mainstream and premium brands, has around 80% of the Wuhan market and a
strong position in Hubei province.   Wuhan, which is situated on the banks of
the Yangtze River, is a city that has been identified by the Chinese
Government for future growth, following development of the Three Gorges
Project and the government's 'Go West' economic development programme.  The
city, which is the capital of Hubei Province, has a population of 5 million of
the 60 million who live in the province.

SAB has also acquired, through CRB, the Snow Leopard Brewery, which is located
near Changchun city, the capital of Jilin Province, North East China.  CRB has
established a new company, China Resources (Chang Chun) Brewery Co Ltd to
acquire the brewing assets and brands of the Snow Leopard Brewery in which it
will hold 85%, with local shareholders owning the balance.

Snow Leopard Brewery's key brands will be developed alongside CRB's existing
portfolio in Jilin Brewery, creating a major brewer in the province.  Snow
Leopard Brewery has a capacity of 1.2 million hectolitres, of which 0.8
million hectolitres is currently being utilised.  Jilin Brewery is currently
operating at its full capacity of 2.1 million hectolitres.  CRB will be able
to use the additional capacity for its existing markets, particularly in
Changchun city, whilst gaining access to new markets in the north of Jilin

The net cost of investment to CRB, including refurbishment, will be US$5.6
million. This will be funded through a combination of CRB's internal resources
and local Renminbi debt at favourable rates.

Graham Mackay, chief executive of SAB said:  'Today's announcement is tangible
proof of the successful SAB expansion strategy in China, where we have been
acquiring and growing local brands to achieve regional leadership. I believe
that the Euro Dongxihu Brewery provides excellent opportunities for
development and growth in Hubei Province, whilst the Snow Leopard Brewery will
complement our presence in Jilin Province and adds to our position in North
East China.'


 Notes to editors

1.     South African Breweries plc is the world's leading brewer in developing
markets, with major brewing and distribution operations in Africa, Central and
Eastern Europe and Asia.  It is the world's fifth largest brewer overall by
volume with 100 breweries in 24 countries and over 31,000 employees.  In the
year ending 31 March 2001, SAB generated US$646 million pre-tax profit from
turnover of US$4.184 billion.  The company is listed on both the London and
the Johannesburg stock exchanges.

2.     The Euro Dongxihu and Snow Leopard Breweries are SAB's 26th and 27th
brewery acquisitions in China since 1994.  SAB operates in China through China
Resource Beverages Ltd (CRB), in which it has a 49% holding.  Through CRB, SAB
is China's leading foreign brewer.  Key brands produced by SAB's Chinese
breweries include: Snowflake, Keller and Lowen. CRB's breweries in China have
a combined capacity of more than 35 million hectolitres.

3.     The Chinese market is amongst the largest and fastest growing markets
in the world, with a total beer market estimated to be 220 million hectolitres
per year in 2001, and an estimated growth rate of 7.2% per annum, second only
to the United States in terms of volume consumed.

Forward Looking Statements

This announcement includes 'forward-looking statements'.  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), as well as those regarding the outlook for the Chinese market and
economy, are forward-looking statements.  Such 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 or the Chinese market and economy to be materially different from
future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such
forward-looking statements.  Such 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 herein 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.

For Further information:

Nick Chaloner, Director of Communications,            + 44 (0) 20 7659 0119
SAB plc                                        Mob:   + 44 (0) 7880 502 755

Ciaran Baker, Head of Corporate Communications,        +44 (0) 20 7659 0120
SAB plc                                        Mob:    +44 (0) 7979 95 4493

Anna Miller Salzman, Head of Investor Relations,       + 44 (0) 20 7659 0106
SAB plc                                        Mob:    + 44 (0) 7973 837 070

This announcement is available on the SAB website at


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