Africa: Heineken acquires additional brewing capacity

Africa: Heineken has announced the acquisition of two holding companies from the Sona Group. The two acquired businesses have controlling interests in each of the Sona, IBBI, Benue, Life and Champion breweries in Nigeria.

The acquisition provides Heineken with an additional technical capacity of 3.7 million hectoliters. According to the company, this will help to “alleviate the company’s current capacity constraints in the market” and improve the geographic location of its breweries.

The acquisition has been funded from existing resources. The transaction price has not been disclosed.

Heineken is to explore the possibility of consolidating the newly acquired breweries into its existing business structure in Nigeria during 2011. Discussions with Nigerian Breweries and Consolidated Breweries will begin now the transaction has been finalised. The acquired breweries will continue to provide and expand contract brewing services to Nigerian Breweries and Consolidated Breweries for the meantime, while continuing to own, brew and support the Goldberg, Williams Dark Ale and Malta Gold brands as well as various smaller regional brands.

Tom de Man, President Africa & Middle East of Heineken, said: “This important move reflects Heineken’s strategy of increasing our exposure to and growth from developing markets. Nigeria is one of the world’s most exciting beer markets and one of the most important countries for Heineken. This acquisition underlines our ongoing commitment to the country and will significantly strengthen our platform for future growth.”

The Nigerian beer market (est. 16.5 million hectolitres in 2009) is the second largest in Africa and has grown at a compound annual growth rate of 9% over the past 10 years ending 2009.

Heineken’s geographic footprint now stretches across 15 countries on the continent with 37 breweries.