Ambev posts net sales of 637B reais in Q3, 6.6% increase from year-earlier period; total volume up 1.6%

SAO PAULO , November 9, 2011 (press release) – Companhia de Bebidas das Americas – Ambev [BOVESPA: AMBV4, AMBV3; and NYSE: ABV, ABVc] announces today its results for the 2011 third quarter (Q3 2011). The following financial and operating information, unless otherwise indicated, is presented in nominal Reais and prepared in accordance with International Financial and Reporting Standards (IFRS), and should be read in conjunction with our quarterly financial information for the three and nine months period ended September 30, 2011 filed with the CVM and submitted to the SEC.

This press release segregates the impact of organic changes from those arising from changes in scope or currency translation. Scope changes represent the impact of acquisitions and divestitures other than those eliminated from the base, the start up or termination of activities or the transfer of activities between segments, curtailment gains and losses and year over year changes in accounting estimates and other assumptions that management does not consider as part of the underlying performance of the business. Unless stated, percentage changes in this press release are both organic and normalized in nature. Whenever used in this document, the term "normalized" refers to performance measures (EBITDA, EBIT, Profit, EPS) before special items. Special items are either income or expenses which do not occur regularly as part of the normal activities of the Company. They are presented separately because they are important for the understanding of the underlying sustainable performance of the Company due to their size or nature. Normalized measures are additional measures used by management and should not replace the measures determined in accordance with IFRS as indicators of the Company's performance. Comparisons, unless otherwise stated, refer to the third quarter of 2010 (Q3 2010). Values in this release may not add up due to rounding.

OPERATING AND FINANCIAL HIGHLIGHTS

Top line performance: Net sales grew 10.6% driven mainly by price increases, with Net Revenue/hl growing 7.5% in the period. Our organic volumes increased 2.9% across regions.

Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) and Selling, General & Administrative (SG&A) expenses: COGS/hl increased by 4.5% mainly due to raw materials and packaging costs, which were partly offset in the quarter by gains in currency hedges. SG&A (excl. depreciation & amortization) increased by 7.3% mainly as a result of general inflation, higher commercial and logistics expenses, partially offset by cost savings initiatives.

EBITDA, Operating Cash generation and Profit: Our Normalized EBITDA reached R$ 2,952.8 million in Q3 2011, an organic growth of 13.5%, while margin continued to further expand (+110bps) reaching 46.3% in the period. Cash generated from operations in Q3 was R$ 3,420.8 million, a 32.9% increase as compared to same 2010 period. Our Normalized Profit was R$ 1,645.4 million (-9.5%), while our Normalized Earnings per share (EPS) declined 9.9%.

Payout and Financial discipline: We announced in the quarter a R$ 2.35 billion payment in dividends and interest on own capital (IOC), to be paid on Nov 18th, totaling R$ 5.43 billion payout year to date.


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