Carlsberg and Scottish & Newcastle will propose a revised restructuring plan for their Russian operation within the next six weeks, according to reports. Danish daily Berlingske Tidende said yesterday (27 July) that the two brewers, who co-own Baltic Beverages Holding (BBH), intend to consolidate BBH's majority stakes in five Russian breweries.

Earlier this month, Carlsberg and S&N proposed that Baltika brewery, in which BBH has a 74.5% stake, would buy both BBH and minority shareholders out of Siberian brewer Pikra. The proposed transaction, which would have cost Baltika over DKK500m (US$80.9m), was rejected, partly because Baltika's minority shareholders did not want the brewery's debt to increase.

"We will make the proposal to the board again, probably in the course of the next month and a half," Carlsberg deputy managing director Paul Bergqvist told Berlingske Tidende.

"Our ambition is to carry out the restructuring within one to two years,' Bergqvist said. 'I am convinced that it will go through."

Elsewhere in the paper, Bergqvist said that the Russian restructure was not being proposed to help repay some of Carlsberg's DKK22m debt. "We will simply restructure in Russia, as that is the best possible solution for our Russian business," he said. "It's positive for all shareholders in Baltika - both majority and minority shareholders."

Speaking to just-drinks earlier this week, S&N spokeswoman Linda Bain did not specify a time-frame for the consolidation. "S&N remains committed to the integration process," Bain said. "We will look at alternatives over the course of the next few months."