MillerCoors profits dip in fourth quarter, but up for 2012

SABMiller plc and Molson Coors Brewing Company reported that Chicago-based MillerCoors LLC posted an 18.6 percent increase in net income to $1.19 billion in 2012. Underlying net income for the year was up 9.5 percent.

Net income for the fourth quarter was down 12.2 percent to $170.4 million and underlying net income was down 4.2 percent to $185.8 million. The companies said increased marketing investment reduced MillerCoors’ fourth quarter earnings. But “positive pricing and favorable sales mix drove strong profitability for the year.”

Fourth quarter net sales were up 2.8 percent to $7.761 billion in 2012, and net sales were up 1.7 percent in the fourth quarter to $1.784 billion.

Miller Lite sales “declined mid-single digits for the quarter and low-single digits for the full year,” the companies said.

“We will continue to invest in the ‘It’s Miller Time’ campaign and will launch a new iconic bottle for the on-premise in mid-2013, following the positive volume impact of the Miller Lite punch top can in 2012,” the companies said.

The Tenth and Blake Beer Company in Milwaukee grew the MillerCoors craft and import portfolio by double digits in the fourth quarter, driven by Blue Moon Brewing Company and Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company. Primarily due to the performance of Summer Shandy, Leinenkugel’s grew double digits for the year, the companies said.

Miller High Life will “kick off” a partnership with Harley-Davidson in the middle of this year, the companies said.

Miller Genuine Draft posted a double digit sales decline in 2012, the companies said.

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