Quilmes Industrial (Quinsa) S.A. (NYSE:LQU; "Quinsa" or the "Company") today announced that its subsidiary Quilmes International (Bermuda) Ltd. ("QIB") has closed the sale of its 57.97 % equity stake in Paraguay Refrescos S.A. ("Paresa") to Coca-Cola Interamerican Corporation ("CIAC").

CIAC intends to make an offer to acquire from minority shareholders the remaining outstanding shares of Paresa, a Paraguayan corporation that produces, bottles and distributes Coca-Cola® and other soft drinks under license from The Coca Cola Company in the territory of the Republic of Paraguay.

Under the terms of the transaction, QIB has received cash payment of US$ 63.9 million. This payment, which is subject to certain post-closing price adjustments, is in addition to a dividend of US$ 1.6 million that QIB received from Paresa shortly before the closing. Furthermore, certain property and other assets not directly related to the soft drinks business of Paresa with a total book value of approximately US$ 4 million, were excluded from the sale. Net profit after tax related to the sale amounts to approximately US$ 27.6 million (subject to post-closing price adjustments), and has been accounted for as Other Income. As of the third quarter 2000, the Company has effectively terminated its soft drinks business in Paraguay.

Paresa's operating highlights are as follows:

June 30, 2000 June 30, 1999
(6 months) (6 months)
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Volumes sold (hl.) 696,000 783,000
Net sales (US$) 32,100,000 38,300,000
Operat. profit (US$) 1,900,000 2,100,000
EBITDA (US$) 5,800,000 6,300,000

Quinsa is a Luxembourg-based holding company, which controls 85 percent of Quilmes International (Bermuda) Ltd., ("QIB"). The remaining 15 percent share is owned, since 1984, by Heineken International Beheer B.V. ("Heineken"). Heineken Technical Services B.V. renders technical assistance to the operating companies. Quinsa, through QIB, controls beverage and malting businesses in five Latin American countries. Its beer brands are market leaders in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay. With the acquisition of a controlling interest in Cerveceria Boliviana Nacional, it is also the beer market leader in Bolivia. Quinsa is also the second largest brewer in Chile. The Company also owns a controlling interest in the largest PepsiCo bottler in Argentina. Quinsa's common and preferred shares are listed on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange (Reuters codes: QUIN.LU and QUINp.LU). Quinsa's American Depository Shares, representing the Company's preferred shares, are listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE:LQU).