Heineken (HEINY) on Wednesday reported a rise in full-year earnings and revenues, despite increased currency headwinds and challenging economic conditions.
Heineken stock gained 2.88% in the first hour of trading on Wednesday in Amsterdam to €75.04, extending their 3.64% gain over the past three months.
The Dutch brewer reported operating profit before exceptional items of €3.54 billion for the full year ending Dec. 31, 2016, a 5% increase from last year. Margins increased 54 basis points for the year to 17%. The world's no. 2 brewer by sales saw revenue increase by 1% to €20.8 billion.
The brewer is under pressure from the world's biggest brewer AB InBev (BUD) , which last year completed a merger with SABMiller cementing its top position.
"In the full year, strong performance in Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific more than offset weaker performance in Africa, Middle East & Eastern Europe where both the difficult economic backdrop and currency pressure adversely impacted results. Revenue per hectolitre improved organically, with a positive contribution from both price and mix," the company said.
The company said for 2017 economic conditions are expected to remain volatile but that it expects further revenue and profit growth.
"We expect continued margin expansion in 2017 in line with the medium term margin guidance of a year on year improvement in operating profit margin of around 40 basis points," the company said.
Heineken on Monday announced it would buy the Brazilian assets of Japanese brewer Kirin, that will see the Dutch company become the second largest beer maker in the region.
"Our unique diversified footprint was again a competitive advantage, enabling us to deliver more than 50 basis points margin expansion, despite more challenging economic conditions in some developing markets and significant currency pressures," CEO Jean-Francois van Boxmeer said on Wednesday.
Heineken is also in the midst of buying pub chain Punch Taverns for £402.7 million in the U.K.