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CHINA: Carlsberg to spend US$460m on Chongqing control

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Carlsberg has lined up a stock transaction that will see it take majority control of Chongqing Brewery in China.

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The brewer, which announced its intention last week to raise its 29.7% stake, said earlier today (4 March) that it will launch a “partial takeover offer” for up to 30.29% of the shares in Chongqing. The majority of the new stake, 20%, will be bought from Chongqing's second largest shareholder, Chongqing Beer (Group) Co.

The offer, for CNY20 per share, values the extra stake at CNY2.9bn (US$462.1m).

If successful, the purchase will allow Carlsberg to “directly manage the company, drive greater synergies and leverage the expanded production footprint across several new provinces in China”.

“Our Asian business is very important for our long-term growth strategy and we are very pleased that we now can take this important step forward in China,” said Carlsberg’s president & CEO, Jørgen Buhl Rasmussen. “We believe that, through our commitment to develop CBC’s strong local brands, Shancheng and Chongqing, … we will strengthen the business significantly, both operationally and financially.”

Carlsberg inherited the holding when it teamed up with Heineken to acquire Scottish & Newcastle in 2008. It raised its share to the current level in 2010.

Chongqing Brewery is listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange.


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