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InBev enters partnership in India

Published on 18/05/2007

18 May 2007

BRUSSELS (AP) – Brewing giant InBev SA said on Wednesday that it would enter India – one of the few world markets where it doesn’t operate – and was striking a long-term partnership deal with a local beverage group, RKJ.

But the world’s largest brewer by volume said it did not expect to generate significant revenue from the deal in the near future as it introduces its range of beers to Indian drinkers.

InBev’s huge range of brands include Stella Artois, Leffe, Beck’s and Brahma.

The company will have a 49 percent stake in the joint venture with the option to increase that at a later date.

“This will be InBev’s exclusive vehicle to invest in the promising Indian beer market,” the company said. “InBev is confident that the combination of its expertise in beer with the financial and operational discipline of the RKJ group will allow the company to deliver its business plan in the country and build a meaningful presence over time.”

Belgian-based InBev relies on emerging economies in Latin America, Russia and Eastern Europe for its growth. It has a massive presence in Brazil where it owns the region’s largest brewer AmBev.

The brewer is still growing its business in China where it bought Fujian Sedrin brewery last year, making it one of China’s biggest brewers.

This year it started a United States distribution deal with Anheuser-Busch that will push premium brands Stella Artois, Beck’s, Bass and Hoegaarden in a market where it has not made much money in the past.

[Copyright AP 2007]

Subject: Belgian news