2nd UPDATE:UB Group Consolidates Beer Operations; To Buy Distiller

on 14/09/10 at 5:23 pm

Industry

BANGALORE (Dow Jones)–United Breweries Group announced Tuesday that its spirits division will acquire a local distiller and its brewing division will consolidate the group’s beer business under United Breweries Ltd. (532478.BY).

United Spirits Ltd. (532432.BY) will buy a majority stake in Hyderabad-based Pioneer Distilleries Ltd. (531879.BY) for about INR740 million ($16 million), while United Breweries will absorb Millennium Alcobev Pvt. Ltd., its joint venture with Heineken N.V. (HINKY).

United Spirits has offered to buy a 54.7% stake in Pioneer Distilleries for INR101 a share, representing a 46% premium over Pioneer Distilleries’ closing price of INR69.05 on the Bombay Stock Exchange Monday.

United Spirits is strengthening its production capacity as it eyes the top spot in terms of worldwide volume sales this year. It sold about 102 million cases of liquor worldwide in the financial year ended March 31, overtaking French rival Pernod Ricard S.A. as the world’s second-largest liquor company by sales volume after Diageo PLC (DGE.LN).

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