Femsa Net Rises 56% on Retail Chain, Heineken Stake

Fomento Economico Mexicano SAB, the owner of Latin America’s largest convenience-store chain, said third-quarter net income rose 56 percent on the expansion of its Oxxo convenience-store chain and profit from its Heineken stake.

Net income climbed to 3.94 billion pesos ($319 million) from 2.52 billion pesos a year earlier, Femsa, as the Monterrey, Mexico-based company is known, said today in a report on its website. Sales rose 4.3 percent to 42.8 billion pesos.

Chief Executive Officer Jose Antonio Fernandez completed the sale of Cerverceria Cuauhtemoc Moctezuma, the beer company founded in 1890 by Femsa’s controlling Garza family, to Heineken NV in April to concentrate on the faster-growing soft-drink and retail units. In return, Femsa received a 20 percent stake in the Amsterdam-based brewer.

Net income included profit of 2.21 billion pesos from the Heineken stake.

Oxxo had revenue of 16.2 billion pesos, a 15 increase from a year earlier. The retail unit had operating income of 1.34 billion pesos, a 9 percent gain from a year ago. The chain added 180 net new stores and had 8,011 at the end of September.

Coca-Cola Femsa SAB, the soft-drink unit that trades separately, reported yesterday that net income fell 0.4 percent to 2.13 billion pesos and sales dropped 1.3 percent to 25.7 billion pesos because of a currency devaluation in Venezuela.

Femsa said in today’s report it sold its Mundet brand of soft-drinks to Coca-Cola Co. during the quarter and signed definitive agreements to sell its flexible packaging unit, known as Grafo Regia.