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Heineken Doubles Full-Year Organic Net Profit Forecast

Heineken has doubled its forecast for organic net profit for the full-year of 2007, the company said in a press release.

The brewer now expects that organic net profit growth will be in the range of 20-25% in 2007.

The company's previous forecast predicted 10-13% growth.

The increase is being driven by volume growth in several regions, and Heineken said volumes showed particularly strong growth in Central and Eastern Europe, Africa and Southeast Asia, buoyed by strong economies, favorable weather, increased demand for premium beers and brand portfolio strength.

The company added that wet weather in Western Europe in June offset some of the volume gains achieved in the first quarter of 2007.

Heineken said higher prices and mixed weather held back volume growth for the Dutch brand portfolio in the U.S., but that sales volume for Heineken Lager grew while the company's Premium Light brand increased volume by 30%.

The company also said that its Fit-to-Fight cost cutting program, which Heineken expects will reduce costs by 135-155 million euros ($186 million-$213 million) in 2007, is on track. The program is expected to reduce fixed costs by 450 million euros ($620 million) by 2008.