SABMiller has signed an agreement to acquire a 99.84% stake in major Ukrainian brewer CJSC Sarmat.

The deal, which is still subject to approval from Ukrainian competition authorities, will see the South African company take over Ukraine's Donetsk brewery, which has an annual production capacity of 2.9m hectolitres. Donetsk is responsible for the Sarmat, Dnipro and Drive Max brands.

The move marks SABMiller's first entrance into Ukraine - a market that is boasting a four-year growth rate of 14%. According to the brewer, Ukraine's forecast for beer market growth is expected to be higher than any other major Central and Eastern European market.

Alan Clark, managing director of SABMiller Europe, said: "We are delighted to announce the acquisition of Sarmat and our entry into the fast growing and attractive Ukrainian market. The Ukrainian beer market has recorded exceptional expansion in recent years, driven by strong economic growth, but it still remains behind other Central Eastern European countries in terms of per capita beer consumption."

SABMiller did not disclose a purchase price, although the value of Sarmat's gross assets were estimated at US$130m.