SABMiller plc announced annual results for fiscal year 2011. The group’s Ukrainian subsidiary showed excellent volume growth.

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On 19 May in London, SABMiller plc, one of the world’s leading brewers with operations and distribution agreements across six continents, reported its preliminary (unaudited) results for the year ended 31 March 2011. SABMiller’s Ukrainian operation, Miller Brands Ukraine demonstrated excellent volume growth, achieving the 2nd highest growth rate within SABMiller’s European division.

SABMiller delivered very strong financial results. Trading conditions across the group were mixed with improvements in most of the emerging markets. Total beverage volumes of 270 million hl were 3% ahead of the prior year on an organic basis (i.e. excluding growth resulting from M&A’s), with lager volumes up 2%, soft drinks volumes up 3% and other alcoholic beverages up 22%. Volume growth was also accompanied by share gains in a number of markets. Group revenue grew by 7%, driven by the higher volumes, selective price increases in the current and prior year, as well as favourable brand mix, all reflecting the strength of SABMiller’s brands.

The group’s financial highlights include:

Financial highlights2011, US$m2010, US$m% change
Group revenue28,31126,3507
Profit before tax3,6262,92924
Adjusted earnings per share:    
US cents191.5161.119
UK pence123.4100.623
Dividends per share (US cents)81.068.019
Free cash flow2,4882,02823

Miller Brands Ukraine (a subsidiary of SABMiller since July 2008) achieved an impressive total volume growth of 21% in the year ended 31st March 2011. Almost half of that growth came from premium licensed brands, recently introduced by the company: Miller Genuine Draft, Velkopopovicky Kozel and Zolotaya Bochka. In this respect Miller Brands Ukraine became No. 2 among SABMiller’s subsidiaries in Europe, second only to the company’s UK operation which recorded 23% growth in lager volumes.

Throughout the year the Ukrainian subsidiary of SABMiller has paid a total of almost UAH 138 million in taxes, making Miller Brands Ukraine an important contributor to the country’s well-being and economic development.

Igor Tikhonov, General Director of Miller Brands Ukraine, said:
“Last financial year was a good one for the company. SABMiller entered the Ukrainian market by acquiring JSC Sarmat in 2008, and since Day 1 we have been working hard on upgrading the production facilities and business processes, to meet the very demanding global quality standards of SABMiller group. We have completed the task, and to signify the considerable improvements that we have made to the original company, last year we changed the name from Sarmat to Miller Brands Ukraine. Our results in financial year 2011 prove that it wasn’t a simple change of a sign-board with the company name. The improved production quality combined with efficient marketing and sales processes led to significant volume growth. I’m especially glad to note the excellent performance of our licensed brands last year. The premium segment is where SABMiller is really strong in many countries of the company’s presence. This segment is also a strategic focus for Miller Brands Ukraine, the area where we see our future in this market.”