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SABMiller PLC - Acquisition

RNS Number:8483M
SABMiller PLC
27 May 2005

Ref: 11/2005


           SABMILLER INCREASES STAKE IN INDIAN BREWING BUSINESS TO 99%


London and Johannesburg, 27 May 2005.  SABMiller plc announces that its Indian
subsidiary, MBL Investments ('Mysore'), has acquired the Shaw Wallace Group's
50% interest in the brewing operations of SABMiller's Indian joint-venture.
Mysore now owns 99% of the brewing operations with the balance of shares held by
third party minority investors.  These operations constitute India's second
largest brewer.


The Indian joint-venture was formed in May 2003 through a strategic agreement
between SABMiller's Mysore Breweries Limited and the Shaw Wallace Group. The
brewing operations in India comprise 10 breweries which supply the whole
country.  Its key brands include Hayward's 5000, the leading beer brand in the
rapidly-growing strong beer segment; Royal Challenge Premium Lager, the
second-largest and fastest growing mild beer in the country; Knock-Out and
Castle Lager.


In the year to the end of March 2005, the brewing operations increased volumes
to 2.4 million hectolitres, up 12% on the prior year.  Upon completion of the
transaction, the brewing operations had net assets of US$37 million.


Andre Parker, SABMiller's Africa & Asia managing director, commented:


'Beer consumption in India remains at around 1 litre per person per year, which
compares to levels of around 20 litres in comparable developing markets.  With a
population in excess of 1 billion, and GDP growth of over 6%, India has the
economic potential to be a leading global beer market.   SABMiller is well
placed to benefit from this future growth and to participate in further Indian
beer market consolidation.'


SABMiller has operated in India since October 2000, when it bought the Narang
Breweries, located near Lucknow, in the state of Uttar Pradesh.  In June 2001,
SABMiller acquired a controlling interest in Mysore Breweries Limited.
Subsequently Mysore Breweries Limited has made other acquisitions in other
brewing operations in India and later in May 2003, Mysore Breweries Limited
entered into a strategic 50:50 joint venture with the Shaw Wallace Group of
India.


Notes to editors:

SABMiller plc


SABMiller plc is one of the world's largest brewers, with 2004/05 lager sales
volumes in excess of 148 million hectolitres.  It has a brewing presence in over
40 countries across four continents and a portfolio of strong brands and leading
market shares in many of the countries in which it has brewing operations.
Outside the USA, SABMiller plc is one of the largest bottlers of Coca-Cola
products in the world.


In the year ended 31 March 2005, the group generated US$2,194 million pre-tax
profit from a turnover of US$14,543 million.  SABMiller plc is listed on the
London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.

The Indian Beer Market


Currently, the total Indian beer market is still small with annual sales of
around 7 million hectolitres, but has been growing rapidly over the last 10
years.  This trend is continuing and overall market growth is estimated
currently to be some 6% - 7% on an annualised basis.  The Indian brewing
industry remains highly regulated and beer is categorised with other alcoholic
products for licensing and taxation purposes.


Strong beer (alcohol by volume of 5% - 8%) accounts for 65% of the total beer
market and the key beer consuming states are Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil
Nadu, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.  Per capita consumption of 0.7
litres is low, emphasising the significant growth potential in a country with a
population in excess of one billion people.


Key drivers of high growth include rising gross domestic product, favourable
demographics, changing lifestyles, and the opportunity to grow per capita
consumption together with potential deregulation of the Indian beer industry.


This announcement is available on the SABMiller website, www.sabmiller.com

High resolution images are available for the media to view and download free of
charge from www.vismedia.co.uk


Enquiries:

                      SABMiller plc                        Tel: +44 20 7659 0100

Sue Clark             Director of Corporate Affairs        Tel: +44 20 7659 0184

Gary Leibowitz        Vice President, Investor Relations   Tel. +44 20 7659 0119
                                                           Mob:  +44 7717 428540

Nigel Fairbrass       Head of Media Relations              Tel: +44 20 7659 0105
                                                           Mob:  +44 7799 894265


This announcement does not constitute an offer to sell or issue or the
solicitation of an offer to buy or acquire securities of SABMiller plc (the
'Company') or any of its affiliates in any jurisdiction or an inducement to
enter into investment activity.

This document includes 'forward-looking statements'.  These statements may
contain the words 'anticipate', 'believe', 'intend', 'estimate', 'expect' and
words of similar meaning.  All statements other than statements of historical
facts included in this announcement, including, without limitation, those
regarding the Company's financial position, business strategy, plans and
objectives of management for future operations (including development plans and
objectives relating to the Company's products and services) are forward-looking
statements.  These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks,
uncertainties and other important factors that could cause the actual results,
performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from
future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such
forward-looking statements.  These forward-looking statements are based on
numerous assumptions regarding the Company's present and future business
strategies and the environment in which the Company will operate in the future.
These forward-looking statements speak only as at the date of this announcement.
  The Company expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to disseminate
any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained in this
announcement to reflect any change in the Company's expectations with regard
thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such
statement is based.

Any information contained in this announcement on the price at which the
Company's securities have been bought or sold in the past, or on the yield on
such securities, should not be relied upon as a guide to future performance.


                      This information is provided by RNS
            The company news service from the London Stock Exchange
END

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