Beer market of Russia 2016: PET goes to draftThe beer market of Russia was warmed up by the hot summer, but the preparation for large volume PET prohibition has already impacted it negatively. The year was successful for Efes, MBC and regional producers; Carlsberg’s positions were virtually stable but AB InBev and Heineken lost a part of market share having focused on the sales profitability. The dynamics of big brands was determined by how much the companies were willing to keep the prices down or by their promotional activity. In this context the economy segment of the beer market and sales of inexpensive draft beer were increasing. The premium segment started shrinking due to license brands migrating to the mainstream segment.
Beer market of Vietnam: “Young tiger”Vietnam is one of the few big beer markets that continue to grow steadily. The beer popularity results from its low price, street consumption culture, and social motives. The outlooks of beer market as well as the Vietnamese economy inspire optimism, though the country is heavily dependent on export of goods. The state regulation can be called liberal, but the key risk for brewers is harbored in intensive rising of excise. Within TOP-4 there are two leaders, Sabeco and Heineken that grow at the fastest rates. The first company effectively employs its capacities, the second one focuses on marketing technologies. Almost 80% of the market belongs to century-old brands, yet the middle class and the youth are shifting their interest toward international premium that is growing taking share from the mainstream.
Analysis of beer market in China (on Russian)
Beer market of Ukraine: big three losing weightIn 2016, fast increase of excises and resulting price spike stood in the way of the beer market stabilization. Most of competition (as well as mass sorts) moved to the economy segment of the market. The biggest losses were incurred by the leading three, especially Obolon, which again experienced pressure after reallocation of Efes market share. However, one should already speak of TOP-4. Group Oasis CIS (PPB) became a strong player and competitor to transnational companies. Besides the net sales of many regional medium breweries look rather good and 16-fold cost reduction wholesale trade license for craft brewers opens up a possibility of rapid growth in 2017.
Japan. Sapporo Holdings chases standalone Pilsner Urquell deal with Anheuser-Busch InBev
In an interview on Friday, Tsutomu Kamijo said Pilsner Urquell is a "good brand" that fitted Sapporo's focus on quality beer. However, the president, who last week announced he would step down at the end of the year, suggested a deal was unlikely unless current owner AB InBev agrees a standalone sale.
"Personally, I want to have Pilsner Urquell, but the other brands, I don't need them," Kamijo said at Sapporo's headquarters in Tokyo. "It [Pilsner Urquell] is a good brand. It fits our culture as beer lovers."
Pilsner Urquell is just one of dozens of central and eastern European beer assets AB InBev has put up for sale after the Budweiser owner acquired them as part of its takeover of SAB. A number of groups are reportedly interested in buying the brands, including private-equity firms and Sapporo's domestic rival Asahi, which has already completed the purchase of former SAB brands Grolsch and Peroni.
Reports in July said that AB InBev is seeking a single buyer for the assets.
Despite his interest in Pilsner Urquell, Kamijo said Sapporo's current focus lies outside of Europe. "We may need more energy to focus on Europe," he said. "In general, the market itself in Western Europe is not so huge. I think we are now at the stage to concentrate on North America and South East Asia, specifically Vietnam."
Asked if Sapporo would consider buying the Vietnamese government's majority stakes in Hanoi Beer Alcohol & Beverage Corp (Habeco) and Saigon Beer Alcohol and Beverages Corp (Sabeco), Kamijo said it was only natural that his company would be interested.
"We are there, and we have a relationship with the Government and also the company," he said. "We know much more (about Vietnam), compared to players such as Asahi and Kirin."
"We're not sure what the Government is thinking about," Kamijo warned. "They are on the way to releasing the government shares in Sabeco and Habeco, but they haven't yet announced how or when."
Sapporo was one of the first international brewers to enter the Vietnamese market and has had a brewery in the country since 2011.
Kamijo will step down as Sapporo's president on 1 January to become chairman of the alcohol, soft drinks and snacks conglomerate. He will be replaced by Sapporo Breweries president & Sapporo Holdings COO Masaki Oga.
Last week, the company launched a 2020 business plan with the aim of more than doubling international profits in the next four years.
8 Nov. 2016