KIGALI May 10 Rwandan brewer Bralirwa
reported a 30 percent rise in net profit for 2012 on Friday,
citing rising demand from a growing number of people with
middling or higher incomes in the fast-growing nation once
devastated by genocide.
The company, 75 percent-owned by Heineken, said
net profit was 19.03 billion Rwandan francs ($29.5 million) in
2012, up from 14.66 billion a year earlier. Revenue grew 18.5
percent, helped by rising volumes of beers and soft drinks sold.
The board recommended a dividend of 20 francs, 17.4 percent
below the 2011 figure, reflecting the firm's demands for cash to
fund an investment programme.
Despite an uncertain global outlook, Managing Director
Jonathan Hall said at the results announcement in Kigali that
prospects for sub-Saharan Africa remained positive and that he
expected the Rwandan economy to continue to expand.
"We see a growth in middle income consumers, but we also see
a very interesting change at the top end of the market," he
said. "I've begun to see the development of bars and restaurants
and nightclubs that cater for a slightly different market and
the growth in that area has increased."
The Rwandan economy has recovered strongly from collapse as
a result of the 1994 genocide. The government has forecast
growth of 7.5 percent in 2013, after about 8 percent in 2012.
Rwanda has a programme to achieve a per capita gross
domestic product of $1,240 by 2020, although government
forecasts suggest it will miss a target of averaging 11.5
percent growth a year to help achieve that.
Bralirwa is Rwanda's oldest brewery with rights to produce
brands such as Guinness and Amstel. It also produces branded
soft drinks such as Coca-Cola.
($1=645 Rwandan francs)
(Reporting by Jenny Clover; Writing by Edmund Blair; Editing by