Heineken agrees to buy Brasil Kirin

Brasil Kirin has a particularly strong presence in the North and North East, where HEINEKEN now has less exposure.

Heineken (HEINY) has agreed to buy the Brazilian assets of Japanese Brewer Kirin (KNBWY) as the Dutch group seeks to compete with AB InBEV (BUD).

The Dutch brewer will become the number two brewer in Brazil, with a share of some 19 percent, behind clear market leader Anheuser-Busch InBev.

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Heineken will pay Kirin Holdings $700m for the business which includes 12 breweries and a distribution network.

With this purchase, Heineken will increase its share of the Brazilian beer market to 20% from 7%, according to Euromonitor, strengthening its footprint in what its the world's third largest beer market with a consumer base of 200 million people.

In a statement, the company said, "Considering various risks associated with (the) Brazilian economy and (the) stagnant and competitive situation in (the) Brazilian beer and soft drink markets, Kirin has come to the conclusion that there are certain limitations in transforming Brasil Kirin into a sustainable and high-profitable business on its own". Its revenue for the period was $1.18bn, with an operating loss before amortisation of goodwill of about $84m.

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"None of the normal ratios work because it's loss-making, but it's a very attractive price", said Trevor Stirling, beverage analyst at Bernstein Research.

The acquisition, dependent on approval by Brazil's antitrust agency, is expected to close in the first half of the year. The company, Mandalay Brewery Ltd., will be 49 percent owned by Myanmar Economic Holdings.

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