Blog: Foster's takeover talk is a load of froth
Olly Wehring | 30 August 2006
Is Foster’s Group really a takeover target? Despite shares in the Australian drinks giant fizzing to their highest point in over 15 years this week, speculation that InBev or SABMiller would be interested in buying the company seems wide of the mark.
Foster’s would be unattractive to a pure brewer. The company generates around 40% of its profits from its wine business, operations that it is also still in the process of restructuring after its takeover of Southcorp.
InBev or SABMiller would not derive any synergies from keeping Foster’s wine assets and would need to line up a buyer for the business. While, in theory, that is not out of the question, few major wine players would be keen to snap up a wine portfolio that remains unsettled post-Southcorp.
Nor does Foster’s appear ready to follow the sale of its international beer business by offloading its domestic brewing assets. The company has worked hard to organise its domestic distribution arrangement along multi-beverage lines, where beer, wine and spirits are handled together. What’s more, Foster’s enjoyed a 17% rise in earnings from its domestic beer business, proving it can make money from a mature beer market.
SABMiller has already signalled where it thinks future growth in the Australian beer market will be with a joint venture with Coca-Cola Amatil that will push its stable of premium beer brands.
InBev, meanwhile, is unlikely to plunge into a mainstream Australian beer market categorised by slow growth when it has enough problems driving sales in similar markets in Western Europe.
Foster’s CEO Trevor O’Hoy may have spent the last couple of days saying that the company was on the “radar” of multinational drinks producers as a “strategic” asset but this sounds like a move to reassure investors that the company is a dynamic one - rather than an indication that bids are on the horizon.
Today is SABMiller's final day. Some time this evening, Brussel's time, the second-biggest brewer in the world will be subsumed into the biggest, creating a beer behemoth of unprecedented proportions....
No, this is not PepsiCo's new ad slogan for its Mountain Dew brand....
Major wine players flocked to China ready for online giant Alibaba's 9.9 Global Wine and Spirits Festival, which took place on 9 September....
In May, Heineken's CEO, Jean-François van Boxmeer, called Vietnam the "poster child" for international beer thanks to strong demographics and growing demand....
- Five ways small brands can beat big players
- Interview, Bulldog Gin founder Anshuman Vohra
- Pernod Ricard Q1 2017 results by region, brand
- Interview, Bulldog Gin CEO Anshuman Vohra, Pt II
- The end is nigh for Global Travel Retail - Comment
- Stumbling UK Pound prompts Conviviality price hike
- AB InBev fund ZX Ventures buys homebrew co
- Edrington’s The Macallan 40 Year Old - NPD
- CCBA partner "in place by 2018" - Coca-Cola
- Beam Suntory to invest US$1bn in Bourbon
- Global gin insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Global Scotch whisky insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Global rum insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends
- Global Wine Market 2016-2020
- Global RTD insights - market forecasts, product innovation and consumer trends