Carlsberg Breweries A/S sells half of its shareholding in OAO Vena Brewery in St. Petersburg to Baltic Beverages Holding AB
Carlsberg Breweries A/S (Carlsberg Breweries) sells 49.9 per cent of OAO Vena Brewery (Vena) in St. Petersburg to Baltic Beverages Holding AB (BBH). Carlsberg Breweries owns approx. 99.9 per cent following the acquisition of the 33.32 per cent the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development owned of Vena. Minority shareholders own the remaining approx. 0.1 per cent of the share capital. As of October 2003, BBH has an option to buy the remaining shareholding in Vena.
The acquisition as well as the sale are subject to approval by the Russian competition authorities.
Selling Vena to BBH is a natural step in the process of concentrating the ownership and, consequently, the overall operating responsibilities for Carlsberg Breweries' activities in Russia, the Baltic countries and Ukraine with BBH, which has more than 10 years of experience in operating breweries in the countries mentioned. Furthermore, the Vena brands will complement the BBH portfolio of brands.
The sales will have no significant effect on Carlsberg Breweries' results for 2001.
Facts about Vena
Vena was established in St. Petersburg in 1872 by two Austrians from Vienna - hence the name Vena. The brewery quickly became lauded for its beer quality and as early as 1882 Vena received a gold medal in Paris.
In 1994, the Finnish brewery Oy Sinebrychoff Ab (Sinebrychoff) acquired 66 per cent of the share capital in Vena. Sinebrychoff is owned 100 per cent by Carlsberg Breweries.
Since the beginning of 2000, the strategy of Vena has been to aim at premium beer in Russia, primarily focusing on St. Petersburg and Moscow. The development in sale during the past 12 months has been extremely positive and thus earlier this year, it was decided to invest DKK 195 million (USD 27 million) in doubling the capacity to 2.4 million hl beer.
In terms of value Vena's market share in St. Petersburg is 12.1 per cent (October 2001). In Moscow, the market share has risen to 5.5 per cent from almost nil.
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Net turnover, DKK
Number of employees
Facts about BBH
BBH is owned 50-50 by Carlsberg Breweries A/S and Oyj Hartwall Abp. The acquisition of Vena brings the number of breweries owned by BBH to a total of 12, of which three are in the Baltics, seven are in Russia, and two are in Ukraine. Furthermore, BBH holds shares in five malting plants.
In year 2000, the turnover of BBH was DKK 4.25 billion, and profit before interests and tax was DKK 1.02 billion. The company has more than 10,000 employees.
Paul Bergqvist, +45 33 27 20 60
Margrethe Skov, +45 33 27 14 10