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Heineken boosts Caribbean, Malaysian presence

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Dutch beer giant Heineken Wednesday announced a deal worth 696 million euros (S$1.1 billion) with the world's biggest distiller, Diageo, to boost its presence in the Caribbean and Malaysia.

[THE HAGUE] Dutch beer giant Heineken Wednesday announced a deal worth 696 million euros (S$1.1 billion) with the world's biggest distiller, Diageo, to boost its presence in the Caribbean and Malaysia.

Heineken has taken control of the Jamaican company Desnoes & Geddes, acquiring Diageo's 57.9 per cent stake.

The Dutch brewer now holds 73.3 per cent of the Jamaican company, which produces Red Stripe and Dragon beers.

"Heineken will in due course make a mandatory offer for all shares of D&G not already owned by Heineken," it said in a statement.

The company has also won full control of GAPL, which has a majority stake in the Malaysian brewer GAB, producers of such beers as Tiger, Anchor and Malta.

GAPL also holds the license to distribute Guinness and ABC Stout in Singapore.

Heineken bought Diageo's shareholding of just under 50 per cent of GAPL to gain 100 per cent control of the company.

"As majority owner, Heineken will be able to drive the investment and strategic direction of the operating companies in Jamaica and Malaysia," it said.

"The Caribbean and Southeast Asia are strategically important," the company added.

Meanwhile, the Dutch brewer said it had sold its 20 per cent stake in Guinness Ghana Breweries to Diageo, giving the British company more than a 70 per cent share of the Ghanian company.

Diageo, which also makes Johnnie Walker whisky and Smirnoff vodka, is one of the world's largest producer of spirits.

AFP