Kirin Holdings will dissolve its 40% stake in a joint venture with China Resources Enterprise. The JV, called China Resources Enterprise Kirin Beverage (Dainhua) will be sold to Plateau Consumer Ltd, a Chinese fund for US$995 million.
The move comes shortly after its official decision to withdraw from its joint-venture brewery in Myanmar.
China Resources Enterprise Kirin is the holding company of China Resources Enterprise Yi Bao (China), which develops soft drink business centered on water in China. It was established in 2011, with China Resources Enterprise holding 60% and Kirin Holdings holding 40%.
However, even after the stake disposal, the business alliance with China Resources Enterprise Group, including the use and license of intellectual property rights in the soft drink business in China will continue.
According to Kirin spokesperson, the JV had been expanding its business in China, making bottled water and bottled tea.
The disposal was part of its recent decision to review its investment portfolio, including foreign operations, under a management plan that runs through 2024. The plan has the company focusing on certain areas, including pharmaceuticals and health science as well as food and beverages.
Kirin is one of Japan’s top beer brands, however beer companies have in recent decades expanded into other types of beverages.
In a separate development, Kirin Holdings has also announced that it is officially withdrawing its business operations in Myanmar and halting its joint venture with a Myanmar junta-linked partner, Myanmar Economic Holdings PCL. This is made after more than a year of dispute with its partner on finding the best way forward for both parties. Kirin is now trying to sell its 2 business units namely Myanmar Brewery Ltd and Mandalay Brewery Ltd. Justice for Myanmar, a group of activists campaigning for justice and accountability for the people of Myanmar, supports the withdrawal of Kirin businesses from Myanmar.