Heineken profits rise

Heineken has posted a 13.7% rise in net profits for the first quarter of 2012 on a 12-month comparison.

The brewers profits have been boosted by better beer sales in Africa and the Middle East.

Heineken’s net profit rose to 175 million euros (£143,334 million), supported by exceptional items, a statement issued by the biggest European brewer said.

Sales by Amsterdam-based Heineken topped 3.83 billion euros, an increase of 6.8 percent when recent acquisitions are excluded. It’s been a good start to 2012 for the beer giant after it was revealed that James Bond will sip one of their drinks in the movie Skyfall instead of his usual Vodka martini.

Net profit was also driven up after Heineken increased its shareholding to a controlling stake in Haiti’s Brasserie Nationale d’Haiti.

Heineken did see a 1.8-percent dip in western European sales, but the brewer noted that first quarter results covered winter months in the northern hemisphere when sales are “less significant” than the rest of the year.

The Dutch group confirmed a 2012 outlook initially given in February, and said it expected emerging markets such as Africa, Asia and Latin America to become increasingly important for sales.

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