South African Breweries nets comms chief

South African Breweries, the world's fifth largest brewer, has

appointed its first global director of communications.

Nick Chaloner, ex-Abbey National director of corporate affairs, takes up

the reins in the company's top communications post with global

responsibility for PR, media and investor relations.

Until now, communications at South African Breweries (SAB) has been

overseen by IR head Anna Miller and retained financial PR agency

Brunswick, which handles the account both in the UK and South


Chaloner's appointment follows the firm's strategy to strengthen the

brand outside South Africa.

Based in London, Chaloner will report to SAB group chief executive

Graham Mackay. He also sits on the company's executive committee.

'The appointment of a senior communications professional will help

leverage the strong corporate image we enjoy in South Africa into other

markets,' said Mackay.

One of Chaloner's initial tasks will be to communicate with internal and

external stakeholders before developing a PR strategy.

Chaloner joins from his post as director of corporate communications at

media technology firm Bright Station. Previously, he headed corporate

affairs at Abbey National.

Before that he was Hill & Knowlton executive vice-president. There

Chaloner led the Athens 2004 Olympic bid communications campaign and

advised clients including BP, Nestle and Pepsi Co.

SAB runs 79 breweries in 21 countries and employs 34,000. Its flagship

brand is Castle Lager, which accounts for more than half of the South

African beer division's sales.

It is listed both on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and London Stock

Exchange and moved its main listing to The LSE in 1999.

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