Asahi Europe will acquire the entire beer, cider, soft drinks and distribution business of Fuller, Smith & Turner for a value of £250 million.
The acquisition will create a portfolio of drinks “to suit a diverse range of modern consumer tastes”, Asahi said, enabling it to enter new categories such as cask ale and cider.
Brands such as cask beers London Pride and Dark Star Hophead, craft lager Frontier, as well as Cornish Orchards cider will join Asahi Super Dry, Peroni Nastro Azzurro and Meantime under Asahi Europe ownership.
The two businesses have also agreed to arrangements that will see beers from across the Asahi portfolio sold in Fuller’s-owned pubs and tenanted outlets. Fuller’s will carry its former brands, alongside the existing Asahi Europe portfolio, across its pubs and hotels.
Under the terms of the deal, Asahi Europe will acquire the operations at the Chiswick-based Griffin Brewery, where it will continue to brew.
Ownership of Dark Star and Cornish Orchards brands, brewing and cider-making operations, as well as wholesale operation Nectar Imports, will also transfer to Asahi Europe.
Hector Gorosabel, CEO of Asahi Europe, said: “Asahi Europe has already established a leading presence in the premium beer category. Welcoming these brands and operations to our business will further consolidate that position, enabling us to even better serve our customers and consumers.
“At the same time, our global footprint will enable us to unlock the potential in these brands internationally to significantly enhance their scale and value. It is another step towards realising Asahi Europe’s vision of becoming a global brewing powerhouse built on our commitment to brewing excellence and quality.”
It is expected the deal will close in the first half of 2019.
Local industry stakeholders under Food Drink Ireland (FDI) have called for targeted support measures in the sector that will help businesses stay buoyant during the transitional period.
Diageo has announced that the company’s CFO Kathryn Mikells will leave the business later this year and will be replaced by Lavanya Chandrashekar.
Schlosberg – who has resigned his positions as president, CFO, COO and secretary of Monster Beverage – will serve as co-CEO alongside Rodney C. Sacks.