10/8/2001 8:00 

Baltic Beverages Holding AB (BBH) sells its 86.6% share of AB Kalnapilis Brewery to Bryggerigruppen A/S (The Danish Brewery Group A/S) at a price of LTL 135.1 million corresponding to DKK 274.2 million. The remaining share capital is owned by minority shareholders of whom several are employees. Kalnapilis is being sold because the Lithuanian competition authorities insisted that in order for them to approve the merger of the activities of BBH and Carlsberg in Lithuania, the parties had to sell one of their three breweries.The ownership of BBH is divided 50/50 between Carlsberg Breweries A/S og Oyj Hartwall Abp.

The sale is subject to approval by the Lithuanian competition authorities.


Merging Svyturys and Utenos

On the assumption that the Lithuanian competition authorities approve the sale of Kalnapilis as well as the plans of Carlsberg Breweries and BBH to merge Svyturys and Utenos, the merger of the two companies is expected to take place in the beginning of next year. The new company will be named AB Svyturio-Utenos Alus and Tomas Kucinskas will be CEO.

The Lithuanian beer market

The Lithuanian beer market has grown significantly with the last few years and todays per capita consumption is 59 litres. The increased beer consumption is mainly due to the economic growth in Lithuania and a generally improved product quality. Lithuania is still a growth market and an annual 5-7% increase in beer consumption is expected during the next five years.

Lithuania has five larger breweries: Svyturys, Utenos, Kalnapilis, the Finnish owned Ragutis and Vilniaus Tauras which is already owned by Bryggerigruppen. Together, the five breweries hold approximately 83% of the market and the remainder is covered by around 25 smaller breweries.

Facts on Svyturys and Utenos

Year 2000

Svyturys

Utenos

   
Volume of sales
600,000 hl beer
470,000 hl beer
Gorss turnover
LTL 103 m
LTL 99 m
Number of employees
330
284
Market share
26%
20%

1 LTL (Litas) = DKK 2.03


Further information:

Paul BergQvist, Executive Vice-president
+ 45 33 27 20 60

Margrethe Skov, Public Affairs Director
+ 45 33 27 14 10

CARLSBERG A/S
VALBY LANGGADE 1
DK-2500 VALBY
PHONE: +45 3327 2727