Large, emerging markets
We’re currently one of the leading international brewers in the world’s largest beer market, China. Our joint venture, China Resources Breweries, has a 10% share of the Chinese beer market and a record of being one of the most profitable. Having grown organically and through acquisitions, it now has 32 breweries and a strong regional presence in second tier regions and cities.
The Chinese beer market is still at an early stage of development. However, we’re confident that consolidation will lead to better prices and that a growing beer culture will further our aim of building Snow into a strong national brand.
While we purchased a 29% interest in Harbin Brewery earlier in the year, we have recently announced our intention to dispose of this interest at a substantial profit. We are selling into an offer being made for the shares of Harbin at a price that we believe more than fully values the potential of the company.
In India, we’ve consolidated our position through the Shaw Wallace joint venture which we are in the process of completing. Through the joint venture we will have breweries in several states across India and a 33% market share, which will make us the number two player in the country. It’s a good base, but we still have much to do in terms of improving the product, developing our brands and introducing modern manufacturing and marketing. India is a highly regulated market with ingrained ways of operating, but there’s no doubt it offers huge potential for growth.
It’s also possible that a period of political stability and economic growth could provide opportunities in Africa which are not visible today.
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