The group’s adjusted earnings per share rose to 123 US cents in 2014 from 120 US cents in the same comparable period last year.
The brewing company also saw a resilient top line growth powered by Africa and Latin American businesses, but impacted by the weaker second quarter trading conditions in China and Australia.
“We continued to grow earnings in the first half with challenging trading conditions mitigated by ongoing efficiencies,” Alan Clark, chief executive of [DATA SAB:SABMiller plc] said.
“Group net producer revenue was driven by lager growth in Africa and Latin America and strong performance in our soft drinks businesses in Africa, Latin America and Europe,” he added.
Clark said lower lager sales in parts of Europe and Asia Pacific resulted in a small group EBITA margin decline during the half year.
“We are well- placed to capture future top line growth opportunities in both emerging and developed markets and are making good initial progress on our plan to realise 500 million US dollars from operational efficiencies and cost savings.”
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The group said it expected growth in the volume while it continued delivering on efficiency.
“We anticipate that trading conditions will remain challenging but we expect to continue to grow volume and NPR,” said SABMiller.
“As part of our strategy we will continue to drive efficiency across our business and invest in the front line so we can win in local markets.”
The group said it expected raw material unit input costs to increase by low single digits in constant currency terms with some markets continuing to be impacted by foreign exchange.