With world markets growing faster than the U.S., investors without international exposure are missing out on huge opportunities by not being globally invested. It used to be you just had to decide between large caps and small caps. Now, as PIMCO co-CEO Mohamed El-Erian told Money magazine, "The typical U.S. investor tends to have about 80% of equities in the U.S. The world of tomorrow suggests a much greater exposure overseas. In general, you should consider holding a third of your equities in the U.S., a third in industrial countries outside the U.S., and a third in emerging markets."

One way to increase your exposure to foreign stocks is to invest in ETFs that track various segments of the foreign market. The iShares MSCI EAFE Index, for example, tracks blue-chip stocks in developed nations while the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index offers access to smaller countries.

Yet another way is to invest in individual companies around the world. Now you don't need an expensive international broker to do this. Luckily for U.S. investors, the U.S. markets are attractive enough that companies commonly list their shares on U.S. exchanges to gain access to U.S. investors.

Today, we'll look at a few companies headquartered in South Africa that are listed in the U.S.


Market Cap


SABMiller (Pink: SBMRY.PK)

$45.1 billion



$154 million


Source: Capital  IQ and Yahoo! Finance

SABMiller went on a $17 billion buying spree in the early 2000s, buying India's Narang Breweries in 2000, the United States' Miller in 2002 from Altria (NYSE: MO) (which currently owns 27% of SABMiller), and Colombia's Bavaria in 2005. This spree led SABMiller to where it is today, the second-largest brewer in the world in between Anheuser-Busch InBev (NYSE: BUD) and Heineken (Pink: HINKY.PK). According to a recent analyst report from Deutsche Bank, SABMiller has the highest exposure over the next five years of the big three brewers to the fastest-growing beer markets of China and India. The opportunity is huge. In China, for example, the average household drinks just over 30 liters a year, compared with 84 liters in the U.S. and 73 liters in Western Europe. And one of the fastest-growing beer markets is Colombia, where SABMiller has a 98% market share. Trading at 24.3 times earnings, SABMiller certainly isn't cheap, but the company's strong brands and market positions make up for it.

Investors in DRDGOLD have been plagued by problems, including the closing of its East Rand Proprietary Mines and the previous placement of its 74 percent owned Blyvoor mine under judicial management in November 2009 because of debt and a large loss, seismic events, increasing energy costs, and a lower rand gold price. South African gold production also fell 6% last year, and miners Gold Fields (NYSE: GFI) and Great Basin Gold (NYSE: GBG) didn't provide an attractive profile for investors.

Things are looking better now, as DRDGold recently signed an agreement to sell off portions of its East Rand Proprietary Mines to White Water Resources. Blyvoor turned around in judicial management. The mine posted a profit in the first quarter of the year, and its debt has been greatly reduced. Also, the mine's output increased to 315 kg/m versus the previous 272 kg/m, and the price of gold itself improved. DRDGold CEO Niel Pretorius had this to say:

The provisional judicial management of Blyvoor has been a success; the company is able to pay its debts as and when they fall due for payment; it has turned the corner and is, once again, a successful concern.

With these issues behind it, DRDGOLD should be back on track for growth.

Is this a good time to hop on the beer bandwagon, or do gold miners catch your eye? Let us know in the comments box below!

Dan Dzombak does not have a position in any of the stocks mentioned in this article. SABMiller is a Motley Fool Global Gains pick. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.