SOUTH AFRICA – SABMiller reported a marginal rise in full-year beverage sales volumes, and said its results were hurt by the strength of the dollar against various currencies.

The global brewer said on Thursday that volume of lager sold rose 2% in the fourth quarter, helped by a strong performance in SA and a recovery in China.

SABMiller shares rose as much as 2.7% in early morning trade on Thursday on the London Stock Exchange.

US domestic sales to retailers declined 2.3% for the year. SABMiller has a joint venture with Molson Coors Brewing in North America.

Sales grew 1% for the year in the Asia-Pacific region which accounts for 15% of SABMiller’s revenue.

The company’s revenue from China in the third quarter was hurt by unusually poor weather.

The world’s second-largest brewer by sales, which competes with larger rival Anheuser-Busch InBev and Dutch brewer Heineken, reported overall organic revenue growth of 4% for the year ended March 31, on a constant currency basis.

Brewers are tapping growth in developing countries to offset tougher conditions in Europe and the US. SABMiller has the largest exposure to emerging markets among its peers.

Heineken, which expects slowing sales and margin growth in 2015, suffered last year as sluggish growth in Europe negated the effect of its expansion in developing markets. – Reuters

April 17, 2015;

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