Asia Pacific Breweries struggles to cut ties with Jiangsu Dafuhao Breweries

Asia Pacific Breweries struggles to cut ties with Jiangsu Dafuhao Breweries

Asia Pacific Breweries faces a further delay in disentangling itself from Jiangsu Dafuhao after the Chinese brewer's controlling shareholder filed legal action to prevent a stake sale.

Asia Pacific Breweries said this week that China's antimonopoly authority has cleared its deal to sell a 49% stake in Jiangsu Dafuhao to CR Snow Breweries, the joint-venture between SABMiller and China Resources Enterprise. The deal is valued at SGD46.6m (US$37m).

However, the sale has hit a snag due to the opposition of Jiangsu Dafuhao's controlling shareholder. Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) said that it has received a summons from the Intermediate People’s Court of Nantong City, Jiangsu Province, instigated by Jiangsu Dafuhao Breweries Ltd. Nantong Fuhao Alcohol Industry Co holds the remaining 51% of Jiangsu Dafuhao.

"The company believes that the claim is groundless and without merit, and has sought legal advice," said APB, itself a joint-venture between Heineken and Fraser & Neave. The Tiger lager brewer said it would "take all necessary steps to oppose it and to complete the proposed transaction".

APB has been seeking to cut ties with Jiangsu Dafuhao since 2008. In 2009, Nantong Fuhao Alcohol Industry Co refused to acquire APB's stake in the brewer.