SABMiller has taken full control of its joint-venture in Vietnam.

The UK-based brewer said today (20 March) that it has agreed with its partner, Vietnam Dairy Products Joint Stock Company (Vinamilk), to acquire its 50% stake in SABMiller Vietnam JV Company.

The company's brewery is located in Binh Duong province and supplies the key markets of Ho Chi Minh City, Mekong Delta and Da Nang. Its assets totalled US$31.8m at the end of last year, SABMiller said.

When contacted by just-drinks, a spokesperson for SABMiller declined to give further details on the purchase price.

"Having acquired Vinamilk's interest in the company, we look forward to developing and expanding our interests further in the growing and attractive Vietnamese beer market," said Ari Mervis, managing director of SABMiller Asia.

"Partnering with Vinamilk at the outset has benefited SABMiller significantly as a result of the local insights and knowledge shared with us.

"This transaction will allow us increased flexibility to implement various business initiatives in Vietnam and the company will complement our existing beer businesses in the broader Asian region."

Mai Kieu Lien, general director of Vinamilk, added: "We have shared a mutually beneficial partnership with SABMiller in Vietnam's developing beer industry, but in the current economic environment we would like to restructure our business operation by focussing on our core business areas in order to enhance our position of strength and maximise the interests of Vinamilk's shareholders."

The beer industry in Vietnam is still relatively small with total volumes of 18.5m hectolitres, but is expected to grow significantly. Current per capita consumption is estimated to be 21 litres per annum.