Brewing giant Heineken has announced that it is to acquire cider brand Strongbow from Asahi Group Holdings Limited along with two other cider brands, Little Green and Bonamy’s.
The deal will also see Heineken gain perpetual licenses on beer brands Stella Artois and Beck’s in Australia.
Drinkworks, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Heineken, will distribute these five brands in Australia after the acquisition.
Drinkworks’ existing premium beer and cider portfolio in Australia include Tiger, Sol, Monteith’s beer and cider, and Orchard Thieves cider.
The acquisition is subject to regulatory approval and follows a successful bid after Asahi put these brands up for sale.
Jacco Van Der Linden, President Of Heineken APAC, said, “We are thrilled to bring the Strongbow brand in Australia home to Heineken and scale up our beer and cider portfolio in one of the world’s leading beer and cider markets.
“This acquisition shows that Heineken remains active in pursuing growth where we see opportunities that align with our long-term strategy.”
Asahi has provided a court-enforceable undertaking to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to divest the five brands, Heineken added.
The undertaking also requires Asahi to ensure that the divested brands receive the same access to bars, pubs and clubs as well as off-premise space under tap-tying agreements as Asahi’s brands until June 2023.
Heineken did not disclose the value of the deal.