The Hague (AFP) - Dutch brewer Heineken said Monday its first quarter profits had almost doubled, with net earnings rising by 81 percent to 1.14 billion euros.
The big rise in profits was driven by higher sales and a big tax gain on the sale of its Mexican packaging arm.
Heineken sold EMPAQUE, one of Mexico's biggest drinks can and bottle makers to US Crown Holdings in February for 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion).
The consolidated turnover of the world's third largest brewer after InBev and SABMiller reached 10.93 billion euros, a rise of 7.2 percent, it said.
Heineken's CEO Jean-Francois van Boxmeer said he was delighted with the results particularly since they came from a solid base and despite "difficult conditions in certain markets".
Last year the brewer's second quarter results were boosted by the football World Cup, particularly in western Europe.