Brewer SABMiller reported a better than expected 7% rise in underlying third quarter sales today.

SABMiller was boosted by gains in Africa and South America, and stronger growth in Europe, where unseasonably mild weather boosted demand. 

The company, which is set to be acquired by Anheuser-Busch InBev in the coming months, said volumes grew 4% in the quarter to the end of December, with lager accelerating to 3% and soft drinks up 8%. 

Analysts had penciled in a 5% rise in sales.