News Column

Budweiser's brewer expects a boost from World Cup drinking

February 27, 2014

CITY A.M. REPORTER



AB InBev, the world's largest brewer, yesterday forecast the Brazilian and Mexican beer markets would return to growth this year due to the football World Cup and stronger economies, but cautioned about higher input and marketing costs.


The maker of Budweiser, Stella Artois and Corona said the World Cup would boost beer sales by one to two percentage points in Brazil, its second-largest market which shrank last year due to a wet summer and high inflation that sapped disposable income.


"Where weather has been good, for example the west coast, volumes have been fine," chief financial officer Felipe Dutra said, though the weak Brazilian real could affect this year's figures.


AB InBev, which sold more than one in five beers drunk worldwide last year, said volumes slipped 1.7 per cent in the final quarter of 2013, but revenue rose 4.6 per cent to $11.71bn slightly below analyst forecasts.


The company reported a 13 per cent like-for-like rise in fourth quarter earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation to $5.2bn, higher than the $4.94bn average in a Reuters poll.


The figure included a $143m oneoff gain related to the recovery of funds from a pension plan in Brazil, although even excluding that it was still above the market consensus.


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Source: City A.M. (UK)


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