AUS: SABMiller begins Australian brand manoeuvres
SABMiller will move its international brands across to Foster's next month
The company, which completed the acquisition of Foster's earlier this month, confirmed earlier today that its Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Miller Genuine Draft, Miller Chill, Grolsch Premium Lager and Pilsner Urquell brands will join Foster's Carlton United Brewers' (CUB) portfolio of international beers.
Subsequent to SABMiller's purchase of Foster's in Australia, the London-based company will also buy out Coca-Cola Amatil from their Pacific Beverages joint-venture. As a result, all of SABMiller's brands and operations in Australia will head to CUB from 16 January, when the integration of Pacific Beverages into Foster’s and CUB is expected to have completed by.
Pacific Beverages was set up in 2006.
Also announced today was that Anheuser-Busch InBev, which had used CUB to handle Stella Artois, Hoegaarden and Leffe in the country, has “exercised its right to end its relationship with CUB for these brands”. While SABMiller did not detail where AB InBev was taking the brands, local reports have claimed that Kirin-owned Lion Nathan, Australia's second-largest brewer by volume behind CUB, will handle them from 1 April.
When contacted by just-drinks today, a spokesperson for AB InBev confirmed the report, adding that Lion already brews and distributes its Beck’s and Budweiser brands in Australia.
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