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Oct, 31 2015

AB InBev sees 9.6 per cent jump in the profit ahead of its merger with SABMiller

The push for the blockbuster tie-up with SABMiller is being fuelled by fears of declining beer sales in key markets as US and European drinkers abandon traditional brands for more local options.

The world's biggest brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev has reported a good result ahead of deadline to finalise its blockbuster offer for London-based rival SABMiller.

AB InBev, the giant behind top lager brands like Budweiser and Stella Artois, said operating profit rose by 9.6 per cent in the third quarter to $4.4 billion (four billion euros), reported AFP.

The strong performance beat analyst expectations and was driven by strong sales of its premium brands in US, Mexico, China and the UK, said analysis Bloomberg news service.

"We are particularly pleased with the performance of our Global Brands which delivered double digit volume and revenue growth," the company said in a statement.

The push for the blockbuster tie-up with SABMiller is being fuelled by fears of declining beer sales in key markets as US and European drinkers abandon traditional brands for more local options.

But the company's premium brands had a bumper quarter. Sold volumes of AB InBev's three global brands grew by 11.5 per cent in the quarter, with Budweiser up 11.5 per cent, Corona up 11.1 per cent and Stella Artois up 12.9 per cent.

Based the solid quarter, the company raised that its forecast for the whole year, saying that sales would now grow above inflation in 2015.

AB InBev on Wednesday said it had agreed with SABMiller to extend its massive buyout offer by a week to allow for further discussions. The results statement made no significant update on the state of those talks.

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