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Growing African lager market boosts SABMiller sales

Financial performance was in line with expectations- CEO.

SABMiller, the world’s second-biggest brewer, reported higher first-quarter sales volumes on Thursday, helped by a return to growth in lager sales in Africa.

The London-listed company behind beers such as Miller, Grolsch and Peroni said revenue rose 6% in the three months to June 30, while volume sold was up 3%.

Volume of lager, SABMiller’s core business, rose 1%, with a 3% increase in Africa and growth in China and Europe. Soft drinks volume, including drinks it sells for Coca-Cola, grew by 10%.

The company said its financial performance was in line with expectations.

“Strong growth in Africa, South Africa and Europe was balanced by slower momentum in North America and a reduction in (net producer revenue) in Australia in difficult trading conditions,” said Chief Executive Alan Clark.

Lager volumes in Latin America declined by 2%, hurt by trading restrictions in Colombia, but returned to growth in Africa following earlier difficulties in countries including Mozambique and Uganda.

SABMiller shares were up 0.3% by 0811 GMT at 3375 pence.

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