INDIA: UB shareholders give go-ahead for re-structuring
An extensive re-vamp of all UB's brewing operations was initiated last year. The restructuring includes incorporating all of the company's beer operations under one unit, UB Beer Limited.
UB chairman, Vijay Mallya, said the company would soon be approaching the government for permission to allow Scottish and Newcastle to acquire a 26% shareholding in UB Beer Ltd. "All approvals leading to the Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearance will happen within four to six weeks. This will pave the way for the UB group to become a debt free company," Mallya said.
S&N will be paying RUP2.5 billion ($52m) for its 26% stake. The UK-based brewer also plans to form a separate joint venture company with the UB group.
UB plans to divest from all its non-core activities which include fertilisers, pharmaceuticals and engineering. "We are planning to get out of all non-core business. All non-core assets will be disposed of when the price is right," Mallya said. "Two more breweries are being acquired and with these two acquisitions whatever needs to be acquired will be with us. The rest is not worth acquiring. We have plucked all the cherries."
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India's largest brewer, United Breweries, is to spend INR4bn (US$90.7m) on boosting its brewing capacity as it aims to keep pace with the country's booming beer market....
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