SABMiller new Nigerian brewery

SABMiller to build new brewery in Nigeria

SABMiller Africa has announced that it will invest over $100 million in building a new greenfield brewery in Onitsha, in South Eastern Nigeria, upping its presence in the Heineken-dominated Nigerian beer market.

The Anambra State Government and other Nigerian investors will hold up to 20% of the shares in the new business.

This follows the successful acquisitions of Pabod Breweries Ltd (Port Harcourt) and Voltic Nigeria Limited (Lagos) in 2009.

The initial stage of investment will see the operation of a distribution depot with construction of the brewery proceeding thereafter. On completion, the brewery which is expected to produce Grand Lager, Eagle, and Castle Milk Stout among other brands, will have the capacity to produce 500 000 hectolitres of beer and malt beverage with the capability to bottle water and other beverages.

Communities in Onitsha and other towns stand to benefit significantly through the creation of employment as well as through indirect commercial related activities and support services. Immediate direct job creation will see 180 trained local people employed, with that number increasing to approximately 450 as volumes grow. Local raw materials will also be utilised where possible supporting the local economy and the Government’s efforts toward poverty eradication and job creation.

Mark Bowman, Managing Director of SABMiller Africa, commented: “Over the past five years we have invested over US $1 billion in Africa. Today’s announcement is an indication of our commitment to increase our capacity further and to consolidate our position as a leading international brewer on the African continent whilst contributing positively to the local communities in which we operate.”

Earlier this year, Heineken, which already holds a 55% share of the Nigerian beer market through its Nigerian Breweries and Consolidated Breweries units, lined up the purchase of five more breweries in the country. Also present in the country’s beer market is Diageo, primarily through its Guinness brand.

About SABMiller Africa
SABMiller has primary brewing and beverage operations in 33 countries and is the number one brewer in terms of market share in most of these countries. In 15 of these countries it has management control, while in others it has a strategic alliance with Castel and a minority shareholding in Kenya and Zimbabwe. It bottles for The Coca-Cola Company in 20 of our African markets.

Some of the key local brands it owns in Africa include: 2M, Castle lager, Castle Milk Stout, Chibuku (sorghum), Club Club Pilsner, Eagle (clear sorghum), Laurentina, Kilmanjaro, Mosi, Ndovu, Nile Special, Safari, Stone and St Louis.

SABMiller plc is one of the world’s largest brewers with brewing interests and distribution agreements across six continents. The group’s wide portfolio of brands includes premium international beers such as Pilsner Urquell, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Miller Genuine Draft and Grolsch, as well as leading local brands such as Aguila, Castle, Miller Lite, Snow and Tyskie. SABMiller is also one of the world’s largest bottlers of Coca-Cola products.

In the year ended 31 March 2010, the group reported US$3,803 million adjusted pre-tax profit and group revenue of US$26,350 million. SABMiller plc is listed on the London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.