Belgian-Brazilian group buys Chinese state beer company for 614 million euros

24 January 2006

Sao Paulo, Brazil, 24 Jan – The Belgian-Brazilian beverage group InBev said Monday in Sao Paulo it had agreed with several shareholders to buy the entire capital of Chinese beer company Fujian Sedrin Brewery for a total of 614 million euros.

The first stake, of 39.48 percent, will be bought directly from the Chinese government, following the approval of market regulators, InBev said in a statement.

The remaining 60.52 percent will be bought from other shareholders, in one or more stages, before the end of 2007, the statement said.

The acquisition of state company Fujian Sedrin Brewery, one of China’s leading beer companies, is one of the largest ever made by a foreign company in China.

The acquisition will boost InBev’s involvement in the Chinese market, where the group has already invested some 400 million euros since 1984 on buying 30 companies in the provinces of Fujian, Guangdong, Hebei, Hubei, Hunan, Jiangsu, Jiangxi and Zhejiang.

Currently, InBev is one of China’s largest beer companies, with annual production of around 3.5 billion liters.

InBev was set up in 2005 through the merger of Belgium’s Interbrew and Brazil’s AmBev, the largest drinks company in Latin America and the seventh largest in the world.

Fujian Sedrin is the largest brewery in Fujian province, on the East coast of China, with factories in the cities of Putian and Sanming.

The brewery controls another factory in Nanchang, in Jiangxi province.

Brazil’s AmBev is Brazil’s largest drinks manufacturer and produces such popular beer brands as Skol and Brahma. (macauhub)