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The world's leading brewer Anheuser-Busch InBev, maker of Budweiser, Beck's and Stella Artois, posted on Monday a 75 percent jump in first quarter net profit to $1.69 billion (1.28 billion euros).

The Belgium-based company attributed the increase to a strong operating performance, lower net finance costs and a lower effective tax rate, one year after recording profits of $964 million over the same period.

The first quarter 2012 result was well above the $1.39 billion forecast by analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires.

AB InBev recorded a 6.2 percent rise in turnover to $9.33 billion in the first quarter, "driven by good performances" in North America, Latin America and the Asia Pacific region, the company said in an earnings statement.

The company's three global brands, Budweiser, Stella Artois and Beck's, performed well with growth of 4.8 percent.


Budweiser was stable in the United States but the beer enjoyed another quarter of double digit growth by volume in China.

In Canada, Budweiser gained market share as it builds "a strong association with hockey," the national sport.

The company, created in 2008 with the merger of Belgian-Brazilian brewer InBev and US company Anheuser-Busch, kept its 2012 outlook unchanged from its last statement last month.

"Momentum in our US business continues, supported by a solid commercial plan, a healthy innovation pipeline and good revenue ... performance," it said.

AFP, photo by primemover88