Heineken, Diageo and Namibia Breweries have finalised their joint venture in South Africa. The three companies announced today that Simon Litherland, managing director of GuinnessUDV in South Africa, has been appointed managing director of the as yet unnamed new joint venture.

The agreement, which was approved by the country's competition authorities last month, will set up a new marketing, distribution and sales division for the three companies.

The move signals a battle for market share in South Africa, where SABMiller dominates, with a 98% stranglehold. Diageo and Heineken took an effective 28.9% stake in Namibia Breweries last year.