SINGAPORE: Heineken raises stake in Asia Pacific Breweries
Heineken has upped its stake in the Tiger brewer
Heineken has raised its direct stake in Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) to 12.18% in the hope of seeing off any challenge for full control of the Tiger beer producer.
In a regulatory filing yesterday (21 August), the Dutch brewer said it has acquired 6.9m APB shares - 2.68% of the group - at SGD53 (US$42.40) via open market purchases and block trades. The dealings raise Heinken's APB holding from 9.5% to 12.18%.
A separate holding company, Asia Pacific Investment Pte Ltd, which has around a 65% direct stake in APB, is jointly owned by Heineken and Fraser and Neave (F&N). The Singapore conglomerate also has a 7.3% direct stake in the JV.
Heineken's latest move means it now has a total direct and indirect stake of around 44.6% in APB.
In the battle for the brewer, the Dutch company last week raised its offer to F&N for its direct and non-direct stake in the Tiger brewer to SGD53 per share, from a previous offer of SGD50 per share. The new "final offer" represents a total sum of around SGD5.4bn (US$4.3bn).
But, it could face opposition from Chang brewer ThaiBev, which has been steadily building its stake in F&N and is the group's biggest shareholder.
Heineken did not reveal who it bought the APB shares from, but reports suggest Singapore state-investment company Temasek Holdings Pte has sold its 1.4% stake to the Dutch brewer.
Earlier today, Heineken reported a slight climb in first-half net profits.
For a video interview with Heineken's CFO, which covers both the H1 numbers and the APB situation, click here.
Heineken has a "low appetite" for China's mainstream beer sector and will continue to concentrate on the premium end of the market, the head of the Dutch brewer has said....
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