JAPAN: Asahi building acquisition war chest
Japan's Asahi Breweries plans to build a JPY400bn (US$4.5 bn) war chest for overseas acquisitions by using loans and revenue.
Company officials have predicted it will earn JPY360bn (US$4bn) by 2012 from overseas holdings, including Schweppes Australia and Tsingtao Brewery in China.
After dividend payments, the company estimates it will have JPY225bn (US$2.5bn), plus JPY25-30 bn (US$288-335m) in savings from cost cutting at its core spirits businesses.
Asahi also plans to borrow up to JPY170bn (US$1.9bn) for major acquisitions, while keeping its debt to equity ratio below one.
"There will be a lot of consolidation in the industry, and we want to play a major role," Asahi Breweries' president Hitoshi Ogita told reporters in Tokyo earlier this month.
For more on Asahi's three-year plan, click here.
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