Expatica news

Belgian brewer toasting world domination

13 August 2004

BRUSSELS – The Belgian firm behind Leffe, Hoegaarden and Stella Artois is set to consolidate its position as the world’s number one brewery, it emerged on Friday.

Interbrew has announced a take-over of part of the investment group Sun Trade by the Sun Interbrew company that is currently active in Russia and the Ukraine.

Interbrew said in March that it was joining forces with Brazilian drinks and beer giant Ambev to become the world’s leading brewer.

A company statement said the latest acquisition was worth $530 million.

Following the transaction, Interbrew now owns 75.5 percent of shares with voting rights, and 96.1 percent of shares without voting rights.

In total this represents a 91.2 percent economic ownership of Sun Interbrew.

The total price paid by Interbrew for its 91.2 percent economic interests in Sun Interbrew capital is approximately USD 94 million.

“This is a historic figure,” said Interbrew spokeswoman Gwendoline Ornigg.

Interbrew is set to acquire 10.8 million new shares to complete the operation by the end of 2004.

“Sun Interbrew has already known huge success by becoming number two brewer
in Russia and number one in the Ukraine,” said John Brock. “We have decided to continue our expansion in Russia and in Ukraine,” he added.

According to KBC Securities, Russia and the Ukraine are two countries where beer consumption is rising steeply.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

                                                    Subject: Belgian news