The date has now been set for Carlton & United Breweries to finally become part of Asahi Beverages, following the Japanese brewer’s long-running acquisition move.
The final step came with approval of the acquisition from the Foreign Investment Review Board.
This approval represents the conclusion of the regulatory review process and all of the regulatory conditions to closing the transaction have now been satisfied.
Chairman Asahi Beverages, Peter Margin, said: “Both parties will move to complete this acquisition on 1 June, with CUB joining the Asahi Beverages family on that day.”
In its statement about the FIRB’s approval, Asahi said: “CUB will become a business division of the Asahi Beverages Regional Hub within Oceania, along with Asahi Lifestyle Beverages, Asahi Premium Beverages and Asahi Beverages New Zealand.”
The FIRB’s approval and confirmation of joining date brings to an end 10 months of negotiation and regulatory approvals. It was back in July last year the AB InBev first announced it had agreed to sell CUB to Asahi for $16bn.
Since then the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), investigated the deal. Cider Australia raised concerns regarding the impact on Australia’s cider category. Those concerns were addressed when the ACCC said it would not oppose the deal, subject to Asahi divesting two beer and three cider brands.
And while the Independent Brewers Association said the ACCC had ‘thrown draught beer drinkers to the wolves’, the deal will now happen.
Speaking in July last year Peter Margin, Asahi’s Executive Chairman, said he could see “a terrific future for Asahi and CUB”, and his vision will now be put into place.