South African Breweries turns investment taps back on for home market

Allocating R2bn for its home operations, the company said on Monday.
Image: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg

South African Breweries (SAB), part of Anheuser-Busch InBev, has reinstated its investment programme that was cancelled last year, allocating R2 billion ($148.12 million) for its home operations, the company said on Monday.

Read: SAB cancels R2.5bn investment

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The maker of Carling Black Label and Castle Lager beer had cancelled R2.5 billion for the 2020 financial year and in January cancelled a further R2.5 billion of investment earmarked for 2021 due to a challenging operating environment, regulatory uncertainty and a third local ban on alcohol sales in the country.

South Africa had banned alcohol sales as part of efforts to free up space in hospitals burdened with alcohol-related injuries for Covid-19 patients. In its latest move to curb the third-wave of infections, alcohol sales were not banned but gatherings have been reduced.

The capital injection is earmarked for projects to be completed in the financial year 2022. Projects include upgrades to operating facilities, installation of new equipment at selected plants, product innovations and other necessary operating systems, SAB said in a statement.

“The move to implement reasonable measures, as we continue to navigate the pandemic, is a welcomed signal that we can expect to see more consultation in the future and that blanket bans will be a thing of the past,” SAB VP Finance and Legal, Richard Rivett-Carnac said.

“Further collaboration will provide the required confidence boost needed in order to attract further investment to the country.”

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I knew they were eventually going to get back to their senses to reinstate the original plans…their threats to pull out investment in S.A was just stunting

Alcohol business in SA is thriving… reality is shud they not do it, their competitors would do it and close the market share gap

This investment we would rather do without. Booze is a curse to our society and fuels crime in a major way. We would rather have a more productive society!

End of comments.

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