Heineken has signed a deal to acquire FEMSA Cerveza, Mexico's second largest brewer, in a deal worth EUR3.8bn (US$5.5bn).

Heineken said today (11 January) that the deal, which will be paid for via a share issue to FEMSA Cerveza, includes all of FEMSA's Mexican beer business, its US export business and 83% of the Brazilian beer business that Heineken does not already own.

If completed, the deal, will hand FEMSA a 20% stake in the Netherlands-based brewer.

Based upon the Heineken share price of EUR32.925 on 8 January, the deal is valued at EUR3.8bn. Icluding net debt and pension obligations, FEMSA Cerveza is valued at around EUR5.3bn.

Heineken said the deal would transform its operations in the Americas.

"Through this deal we become a much stronger, more competitive player in Latin America, one of the world's most profitable and fastest growing beer markets," said Heineken's CEO and chairman, Jean-François van Boxmeer.

"The acquisition strengthens considerably our position within the global beer market, expands our portfolio of leading international brands and enhances our leading position in the US import market," he added.

FEMSA's chairman and CEO, José Antonio Fernández Carbaja, said: "Heineken presented us with the most compelling opportunity to transform our brewing assets.

"It enables us to unlock the significant value that we have created during the past decade, while also allowing our shareholders, through our significant stake in Heineken, to participate in the long-term value creation we believe will come from aligning FEMSA Cerveza with Heineken."

Both groups expect to complete the deal in the second quarter of 2010.

For the full announcement, click here.

An update, following a conference call on the deal, will appear here later today.