November 14, 2012 / 7:58 AM / 5 years ago

San Miguel says 9-mth net profit jumps 61 pct

MANILA, Nov 14 (Reuters) - San Miguel Corp, the Philippines’ most diversified conglomerate, reported a 6 1 pe rcent rise in nine-month profit, driven by an expanded business portfolio.

Net income rose to 19.2 billion pesos ($467 million) in January-September f rom 1 1.9 billion pesos a year ago, San Miguel said on Wednesday. The group’s net sales climbed 29 pe rcent to 509 .2 bil lion pesos.

San Miguel has diversified into power generation and distribution, oil refining, mining, telecoms, and infrastructure over the past four years to accelerate earnings growth after dominating the local market for food and beverage for decades.

In March, San Miguel’s oil refining unit, Petron Corp , completed a $610 million acquisition of 65 percent of Esso Malaysia Bhd, 100 percent of ExxonMobil Malaysia Sdn Bhd, and 100 percent of ExxonMobil Borneo Sdn Bhd, boosting its oil refining capacity and giving it control of 560 retail stations.

In the following month, San Miguel bought stakes in Philippines Airlines and a sister carrier Air Philippines Corp from Filipino billionaire and brewing rival Lucio Tan in a deal worth about $500 million.

Shares in San Miguel have dropped more than 6 percent this year against the 25 percent gain in the main stock index. The stock ended unchanged before the earnings announcement.

$1 = 41.1 pesos Reporting by Erik dela Cruz; Editing by Ryan Woo

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