Asahi Group has agreed to buy brewing assets in five Eastern European nations from Anheuser-Busch InBev NV in a deal worth about US$7.8 billion.
The assets being acquired include Czech brewer Plzensky Prazdroy, the maker of Pilsner Urquell, and Polish beer brands such as Tyskie and Lech, the Wall Street Journal reports.
The agreement came after AB InBev put the Eastern Europe assets on the block as part of a plan to win regulatory approval for its merger with SABMiller, an initiative that was completed in October.
The acquisition complements a previous 2.55 billion euro deal made by Asahi to acquire some of SABMiller’s other European brands, including Peroni and Grolsch, the report noted.
The Japanese brewer said the brands will help establish Asahi as a “global player that leverages its strengths originating in Japan”.
The deal is the second-largest on record in the food and beverage industry by a Japanese entity after Suntory’s US$16 billion deal for US liquor maker Beam in 2014, according to the Journal.
Japanese beer makers have been looking overseas for growth as business in their home market has been slowing.
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