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Russia: Positions of Brewing Companies

The review contains an analysis of interim performance of brewers in the first half of 2019. There are rather dynamic changes behind a modest industry growth. Baltika is again experiencing a stage of volumes and market share slid due to competition with AB InBev Efes. Because of the price competition and presence expansion in the modern trade company #2. has come close to the leading position. At the same time sales of Heineken Russia have continued growing which makes the premium part of the portfolio heavier. The market premiumization trend had been also confirmed by import brands. MBC and Zavod Trekhsosenskiy have been the most successful among federal market players. The market share of independent regional brewers and Ochakovo have continued falling as they are being squeezed out by the market leaders at their competitive fields.

Ukrainian beer market 2019: companies and brands

In 2019 beer production and market have been still fluctuating about zero point. However, the past season was successful for brewers judging by the sales profitability. The price mix has improved due to rapid general market premiumization, as well as its particular aspect, the growth of import beer sales. By the season end AB InBev Efes improved its positions considerably. It turned out that consumers had not forgot Efes brands that had to leave the market, but started to recover rapidly. Against the stagnating market that meant sales decline of other companies, in the first place Carlsberg Group that most of all beneficiated from Efes exiting the market. PPB turned out to be stable to branding activity of its competitor and Obolon kept the same volumes and at the moment it is the absolute leader of the economy segment. The share growth of independent producers took place thanks to leading craft breweries, that so far do not have a big market weight, but they are rapidly gaining it.

Brewing industry in Kazakhstan 2019

During the first half of 2019, the majority of Kazakh brewers made their contribution into positive dynamics. Yet it was companies of the lower division, not the two transnational leaders that raised their production and sales. The shares of draft beer and aluminum can which is rapidly squeezing glass bottle out of the market, have been growing. The price segmentation has remained stable despite the substantial rise of retail prices and fluctuations of brand market shares, while the borders between segments have become blurred. The main events in the industry have been: the announced revision of the beer excise policy, launch of BeerKhan brand in the strong beer segment, and most important – purchasing assets of Shymkentbeer by Arasan.

Foster’s does not rule out takeover talks with SABMiller

* CEO Pollaers says SABMiller offer was too low to bother with
* Says rejection of SABMiller bid did not mean it would not engage in talks
* Foster's rebrands beer business, tweaks name
* Shares trading barely above SABMiller's rejected offer (Adds analyst quotes, details)

Australian brewer and takeover target Foster's on Friday did not rule out takeover talks with suitor world No.2 SABMiller , but said the spurned $10.4 billion offer was so low it was not worth discussing.

Foster's new Chief Executive John Pollaers, facing a barrage of questions from analysts and shareholders at a business lunch, defended the board's decision to reject the deal and focus on restoring Foster's share in a declining Australian beer market.

"The value put on the table was so far away from reality that it wasn't worth engaging (with SABMiller)," Pollaers said.

But he added: "We are not saying that we would never engage. Our interest is the shareholders' interest."

Foster's, one of the last big prizes in a consolidating global beer market, has high margins and a 50 percent market share in Australia, where it brews the Victoria Bitter, Crown and Pure Blonde brands.

But it has been losing share as consumers switch from traditional brands to premium and craft beers, and on Friday Foster's launched a new logo, rebranding its main beer business with a minor change in name.

Pollaers said the brewer had the support of shareholders for its strategy of focusing on growing the business and not being distracted by the offer on the table.

But not all agreed.

"I would have thought if anyone approaches, you talk to them because you never know what can come of it," said Craig Young, portfolio manager at Tyndall Investment Management, which owns Foster's shares.

Reporting its first-quarter earnings last week, SABMiller, the maker of Miller Lite, Grolsch and Peroni, kept the market guessing if it will sweeten its bid.

Foster's rejected SABMiller's A$9.5 billion ($10.4 billion) offer last month and refused to enter discussions.

With no other bidders emerging since then, analysts have said SABMiller may be reluctant to bid against itself and could use Foster's upcoming annual results on Aug. 23 to put pressure on the Foster's board to negotiate.

SABMiller said in June it had shown no intention of going hostile, and it expected to engage the Foster's board in further talks.

It offered A$4.90 per share for Foster's, and after trading to a 10-month high of A$5.23, the shares have cooled in the absence of a rival bid to a slim premium over the offer price.

The shares dipped to A$4.98 on Thursday, recovering a bit on Friday to close at A$5.05, up 1.4 percent in a broader market down 0.9 percent.


Australia's beer market has declined in recent years, as consumers turn to wine and premixed drinks. But Foster's also has a large stable of traditional beers that are losing share to craft brands, and to main rival Kirin's Lion Nathan.

Pollaers said on Friday Foster's has stabilised its market share for the first time in 10 years and expects the beer sector to return to modest growth.

"We believe that once Australia moves through this period of economic uncertainty, the beer category will return to the long-term trend of modest growth," he said.

The past 12 months have been the most volatile the brewer has seen, mostly due to extreme weather conditions, including an unusually cool and wet southern hemisphere summer.

Pollaers took over as chief executive in May, after being the managing director of the beer business where he was the sixth chief in seven years.

"The company line is, Pollaers has to put his head down and he's got to regenerate the beer business and he has to put at the back of his mind the fact that SAB has approached them," said an analyst who declined to be named because he was not authorised to speak to the media.

Still, Pollaers answered questions for nearly half an hour, longer than his formal speech at the business lunch, and nearly all of them on the company's rejection of SABMiller.

Foster's has forecast its beer volumes in the latest six months to June would decline 3-4 percent, a slight improvement from the December half, but severe floods across eastern Australia earlier this year could have further weakened sales.

The brewer rebranded its beer business on Friday with a minor tweak to the brand name.

The beer business will be called Carlton United Brewers, a slight change from the original Carlton & United Breweries, in what Pollaers said was a renewed focus on beer following the split from the wine unit, Treasury Wine Estates .

TWE was listed separately on the stock exchange in May.

1 Авг. 2011



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