SMC: 2008 profit surge to PHP 19.3 billion

San Miguel Corp. (SMC) south-east Asia“s largest food and drink conglomerate, posted a net income of PHP 19.3 billion last year or more than double the PHP 8.63 billion reported in 2007, boosted by a…

San Miguel Corp. (SMC) south-east Asia“s largest food and drink conglomerate, posted a net income of PHP 19.3 billion last year or more than double the PHP 8.63 billion reported in 2007, boosted by asset sales. Excluding non-recurring gains, San Miguel“s net earnings reached PHP 7.22 billion, still up by 4% from the previous-year level. Ramon S. Ang, SMC president and chief operating officer said, “In a year when commodity costs were a challenge, our performance results are particularly encouraging, coming as they do from a combination of operating leverage and a tighter reining in on costs across all our businesses. Our core businesses continue to benefit from the strategic and operational improvements to the company which we believe have brought greater focus to each sector as they were increasingly managed as separate businesses with new avenues to growth via the equity markets or strategic investors”. During the period under review, San Miguel sold its stake in KSA Realty and some shares in local flagship brewery firm San Miguel Brewery Inc. (SMBI). It also sold its 35% interest in its packaging business to its long-time partner Nihon Yamamura Glass. Consolidated sales revenue grew 14% to PHP 168 billion from only PHP 148 billion while operating income grew 26% to PHP 14.8 billion. Other income amounted to PHP 6.66 billion. Despite tough business conditions that resulted in higher costs, SMBI maintained its strong performance with its sales revenues rising 11% to PHP 48.8 billion on the back of higher sales volume. Overseas beer operations posted a turnaround from the previous year“s loss owing to steady gains in Indonesia, North China, Thailand, Hong Kong as well as beer exports. San Miguel“s liquor and spirits subsidiary, Ginebra San Miguel, reported a 9% improvement in sales volumes. The group“s packaging business also sustained its recovery thanks to strong demand for glass and plastic containers.