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SABMiller plc
Public limited company
Traded as LSESAB, JSE: SAB
Industry Brewing, beverage
Founded February 8, 1895; 121 years ago (1895-02-08)[1]
Headquarters London, England
Area served
Key people
Jan du Plessis (Chairman)
Alan Clark (CEO)
Revenue US$ 22.130 billion (2015)[2]
US$ 4.384 billion (2015)[2]
US$ 3.557 billion (2015)[2]
Number of employees
69,000 (2016)[3]
Subsidiaries Bavaria Brewery
Foster's Group
Kompania Piwowarska
Miller Brewing Company
South African Breweries
Pilsner Urquell Brewery

SABMiller plc (LSESAB, JSE: SAB) is a multinational brewing and beverage company headquartered in London, England. It is the world's second-largest brewer measured by revenues (after Anheuser-Busch InBev) and is also a major bottler of Coca-Cola.[4][5] Its brands include Fosters, Miller, and Pilsner Urquell.[4] It has operations in 80 countries world-wide and in 2009 sold around 21 billion litres of beverages.[4][dead link]

SABMiller's origins date back to the foundation of South African Breweries in 1895 to serve a growing market of miners and prospectors in and around Johannesburg. Two years later, it became the first industrial company to list on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange. From the early 1990s onwards, the company increasingly expanded internationally, making several acquisitions in both emerging and developed markets. In 1999, it formed a new UK-based holding company, SAB plc, and moved its primary listing to London. In May 2002, SAB plc acquired Miller Brewing, forming SABMiller plc.

SABMiller had a primary listing on the London Stock Exchange and was a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index. However in October 2015, Anheuser-Busch InBev announced plans to acquire SABMiller for £69 billion ($104 billion).[6] The acquisition, which would drop the name SABMiller, was approved by shareholders of both companies on 28 September 2016.[7]


The origins of the company date back to the foundation of South African Breweries in 1895 in South Africa. For many decades, the operations of South African Breweries were mainly limited to southern Africa, where it had established a dominant position in the market during South African Apartheid, until 1990 when it began investing in Europe.[8]

In 1999, after listing on the London Stock Exchange[8] to raise capital for acquisitions, the group purchased the Miller Brewing Company in North America from the Altria Group in 2002, and changed its name to SABMiller.[8]

Following this, the group's next major acquisition was of a major interest in Bavaria S. A., South America's second largest brewer and owner of the Aguila and Club Colombia brands in 2005.[8]

The company became engaged in the hostile takeover of Fosters in August 2011,[9] and in September 2011 the board of Foster's agreed to a takeover bid valuing the company at A$9.9bn (US$10.2bn; £6.5bn).[10] The deal was completed by the end of 2011, but excluded the Foster's lager brand in the UK and Europe, where it is owned by Heineken.[11]

In November 2011, SABMiller launched Impala Cervejas in Africa, the first commercially produced cassava beer, although Africans have been making cassava home brews for generations. The taste is described as "somewhat bitter, somewhat tangy, not sweet".[12]

In 2013, the company joined leading alcohol producers as part of a producers' commitments to reducing harmful drinking.[13]

In July 2014, the company announced it was divesting its 39.6 percent stake in casino and hotel group Tsogo Sun Holdings Limited through institutional share placements and a partial buy-back from Tsogo Sun. SABMiller's stake at the time was valued at approximately ZAR11.7 billion (US$1.09 billion).[14]

In September 2014, the company made an unsuccessful attempt to acquire a controlling stake in Dutch rival Heineken International,[15] a move Bloomberg states was part of SABMiller's strategy to protect itself from a potential takeover bid from Anheuser-Busch InBev.[16]

On 27 November 2014, it was announced that SABMiller, The Coca-Cola Company and Gutsche Family Investments had agreed to combine the bottling operations of their non-alcoholic ready-to-drink beverages businesses in southern and east Africa. The new bottler, Coca-Cola Beverages Africa, will serve 12 high-growth countries accounting for approximately 40 percent of all Coca-Cola beverage volumes in Africa. SABMiller will hold 57 percent shareholding in the proposed venture.[17]

In May 2015, SABMiller announced it would acquire British brewery company Meantime Brewing for an undisclosed fee.[18] The Meantime brand along with Grolsch and Peroni was subsequently sold to Asahi Group Holdings of Japan in April 2016.

On 16 September 2015, Anheuser-Busch InBev made another acquisition bid for SABMiller. This deal would unite the world's two biggest beermakers and control about half the industry's profit. The deal, however, has to go through several regulatory hurdles which would require certain operations to be spun off the group.[19] A deal was announced on 13 October 2015.[20] The transaction completed on 10 October 2016.[21]


SABMiller has grown from its original South African base into a global company with operations in both developed markets and emerging economies such as Eastern Europe, China and India. It is one of the world's largest brewers, with brewing interests and distribution agreements across six continents. Its worldwide portfolio of brands includes premium international beers such as Pilsner Urquell, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Miller Genuine Draft and Grolsch along with leading local brands such as Aguila, Castle, Miller Lite, Snow, and Tyskie.

Africa and Asia (ex. South Africa)[edit]

SABMiller's brewing operations in Africa span 31 countries. In China, the group's national brand, Snow, is produced in partnership with China Resources Enterprise Limited, and is the leading brand by volume in China. SABMiller is the second-largest brewer in India and has joint ventures in Vietnam and Australia.

Brands include: N'gola, 2M, Castle Lager, Castle Milk Stout, Eagle, Fosters, Kilimanjaro, Haywards 5000, Royal Challenge, Knock out, Indus Pride, Snow, Zorok, and White Bull.


In September 2011, the board of Foster's Group agreed to a takeover bid by SABMiller, valuing the company at A$9.9bn (US$10.2bn; £6.5bn).[10]

Brands include:

Carlton Draught, Cascade Draught (see Cascade Brewery), Foster's Lager, Melbourne Bitter, Pure Blonde, Victoria Bitter, and the Matilda Bay Brewing Company portfolio.


SABMiller's entry into the European market began in 1995 with the acquisition of Dreher in Hungary. The group's European operations are mostly centred in the fast developing consumer markets in Central and Eastern Europe (Hungary, Romania, Poland, Czech Republic and Russia), although there are operations in Italy, France, UK, Spain and Germany where it imports its international brands. On 19 November 2007, the board of Royal Grolsch NV accepted a €816 million offer for the company by SABMiller. The takeover was completed with the delisting of Grolsch's shares on 20 March 2008.

Brands include:

Pilsner Urquell, Šariš Brewery, Velkopopovický Kozel, Radegast, Tyskie, Topvar, Ursus, Dreher, and Lech.

Latin America[edit]

SABMiller first entered the Latin American market with the acquisition of Cerveceria Hondureña in Honduras, making the company the first international brewer to enter Central America. Since then, the group has expanded its Latin American operations into six countries, including Colombia, El Salvador, Ecuador, Panama and Peru.

Lager brands include:

Isenbeck (Argentina), Aguila, Club Colombia, Costeña, Poker, Pilsen (Colombia), Cristal, Pilsen Callao, Pilsen Trujillo, Cusqueña, Arequipeña (Peru), Pilsener, Club (Ecuador), Pilsener, Regia, Suprema, Golden Light (El Salvador), Port Royal, Salva Vida, Imperial (Honduras), Atlas (Panama), and Balboa (Panama).

North America[edit]

On 9 October 2007, SABMiller and Molson Coors Brewing Company announced a joint venture to be known as MillerCoors. US antitrust regulators approved the joint venture on 5 June 2008. The merger was completed on 30 June 2008 and MillerCoors began operation as a combined entity on 1 July 2008. The combined venture will be[clarification needed] headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. Pete Coors has been named as chairman of the new company, and Molson Coors Chief Executive Leo Kiely will be[clarification needed] the new CEO of the joint venture. Tom Long, CEO of Miller, will be appointed president and chief commercial officer. They have recently opened permanent offices in Canada, in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.

Brands include:

Miller Lite, Miller Genuine Draft, Olde English 800, Milwaukee's Best, Miller Chill, Hamm's, and Leinenkugel.

The proposed merger with Anheuser Busch InBev would give the newly combined company a near monopoly on beer production in the United States, whose Federal Trade Commission poses the largest obstacle to the merger moving forward. Numerous brands would have to be spun off to receive regulatory approval.[6]

South Africa[edit]

This is the group's most established market to date. Local subsidiary SAB Ltd's soft drink division is also the country's largest producer of products for The Coca-Cola Company.

Brands include: Castle Lager, Castle 1895, Grolsch, Castle Milk Stout, Hansa Marzen Gold, Hansa Pilsener, Carling Black Label, Carling Blue Label, Castle Lite, Redd’s, Peroni, Miller Genuine Draft, Brutal Fruit, Flying Fish, Liberado, and Carver's Weiss.


Main article: SABMiller brands
SABMiller beers on display as SABMiller World in Pilsen, Czech Republic

SABMiller beers include those classified by the company as "global beers", the flagships of SAB Miller:

SAB Miller also owns over 150 market-leading local brands. The company is one of the world’s largest Coca-Cola bottlers and has carbonated soft drinks bottling operations in 14 markets.

Corporate social responsibility[edit]


SABMiller runs a number of sustainable development initiatives across its companies and in the countries in which it operates. They use new lightweight bottles that use 30 percent less glass. The lightweight bottles are designed to not only reduce the amount of waste materials but also cut down on energy used in production and distribution reducing the company's carbon emissions.[22] SABMiller submits to a number of third party annual reports that review the company's environmental record. The corporation provides links to such reports on their own website.[23]

Like many multinationals, SABMiller has attracted close scrutiny for its adherence to the corporate social responsibilities it espouses. One major study, undertaken by BioMed Central and published in 2013, examined the global CSR of three of the biggest manufacturers of alcohol - Pernod Ricard, SABMiller and AB InBev - and concluded it amounted to 'the illusion of righteousness'.[24]


In November 2010, the charity ActionAid published a report alleging that SABMiller has avoided paying a total of around £20 million of corporation tax in five African countries – Ghana, Mozambique, Tanzania, South Africa and Zambia – and in India. SABMiller has denied these allegations.[25]

In October 2015, the Financial Times described the actions of SABMiller and other multinationals operating in Africa as "looters".[26] The issue is transfer pricing, the transfer of goods or services to another arm of the group in a different country. For its part, SABMiller has stated that its tax contribution in Africa is "substantial". It releases its tax contributions for four of the 17 African markets in which it operates.[27]

Senior management[edit]

Name Job Title Division Notes
Alan Clark CEO SABMiller [28]
John Davidson General Counsel & Group Company Secretary SABMiller Since 2006 [28]
Mauricio Leyva Chairman and Managing Director SAB Ltd [28]
Karl Lippert President SABMiller Latin America [28]
Mark Bowman Managing Director SABMiller Africa [28]
Nick Fell Marketing Director SABMiller [28]
Ari Mervis Managing Director SABMiller Asia [28]
Tony Van Kralingen Director Human Resources and Supply Chain [28]

Board of directors[edit]

The current members of the SABMiller Board are:[29]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "History". SABMiller. Retrieved 21 March 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c "Annual Report 2015" (PDF). SABMiller. Retrieved 26 March 2016. 
  3. ^ "Who we are". SABMiller. Retrieved 26 March 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c "Company Snapshot 2010" (PDF). SABMiller plc. Retrieved 30 August 2010. 
  5. ^ "SABMiller, Asahi eye Foster's beer unit: sources". Reuters. 23 August 2010. Retrieved 30 August 2010. 
  6. ^ a b "AB InBev, SABMiller clink glasses for £69-b deal". The Hindu Business Line. 
  7. ^ Mickle, Tripp (2016-09-28). "SABMiller, AB InBev Shareholders Approve $100 Billion-Plus Merger". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2016-09-29. 
  8. ^ a b c d "404". Retrieved 21 March 2015. 
  9. ^ Werdigier, Julia (2 September 2011). "SABMiller's Takeover of Foster's Gets More Hostile". The New York Times. 
  10. ^ a b "SABMiller agrees Foster's takeover deal". BBC News. 21 September 2011. Retrieved 21 September 2011. 
  11. ^ "SABMiller agrees Foster's takeover deal". BBC News. 21 September 2011. 
  12. ^ "SABMiller Launches 'Entry-Level' Cassava Beer". Retrieved 2 November 2011. 
  13. ^ "Home | Producers' Commitments". Producers' Commitments. Retrieved 2015-12-23. 
  14. ^ "Tsogo Sun stake sale to fetch SABMiller". Business Sun. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  15. ^ Titcomb, James (2014-09-15). "Heineken family rejects SABMiller takeover offer". The Daily Telegraph. Telegraph Media Group Limited. Retrieved 2015-02-13. 
  16. ^ Chong, Tim (2014-09-14). "Heineken confirms, rebuffs SABMiller bid". Reuters. Thomson Reuters. Retrieved 2015-02-13. 
  17. ^ "Press Releases - The Coca-Cola Company, SABMiller plc and Coca-Cola Sabco to form Coca-Cola Beverages Africa" (PDF). SABMiller. 27 November 2014. Retrieved 4 December 2014. 
  18. ^ Keith Weir and Mark Potter (15 May 2015). "SABMiller buys Meantime to quench thirst for craft beer". Reuters. Retrieved 18 May 2015. 
  19. ^ Jarvis, Paul (16 September 2015). "AB InBev Approaches SABMiller in Record Industry Combination". Bloomberg Businessweek. Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved 18 September 2015. 
  20. ^ "Anheuser-Busch InBev agrees to buy SABMiller in biggest beer deal ever". CNNMoney. 13 October 2015. 
  21. ^ "Enlarged AB InBev expected to play tough on barley prices". Financial Times. 10 October 2016. Retrieved 10 October 2016. 
  22. ^ "Product life cycle: Solutions out of the box" "Climate Change Corp" 7 May 2008. Retrieved 12 May 2008
  23. ^ "". Retrieved 12 May 2008 Archived 14 April 2008 at the Wayback Machine.
  24. ^
  25. ^ Lawrence, Felicity (29 November 2010). "Brewer accused of depriving poor countries of millions in revenue". The Guardian. UK. Retrieved 29 November 2010. 
  26. ^
  27. ^
  28. ^ a b c d e f g h "Google Finanace". Lon: SAB. Retrieved 30 January 2012. 
  29. ^ "Board". SABmiller plc. 2012. Retrieved 1 November 2012. 
  30. ^ "Manuel joins SABMiller". Moneyweb. Retrieved 21 March 2015. 

External links[edit]