As part of its acquisition of the South African-based Distell Group, Heineken, the Dutch-based alcohol brewer, would sell a 35 percent stake in its regional alcohol distribution company, which includes Kenya.

The Distell Group is the world’s top producer and marketer of wines, spirits, ciders, and other ready-to-drink (RTD) beverages, with operations in South Africa and Africa.

Distell products are priced over the pricing continuum to cater to a broad spectrum of consumers, with a diverse portfolio of brands with deep heritage and authenticity.

Distell employs around 4,400 people. Heineken’s distribution businesses in Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, and South Sudan will be transferred to Sunside Acquisitions Limited, a South African corporation owned jointly by Heineken and Distell.

Heineken, which presently controls all of the regional alcohol distribution companies, will have a diluted but controlling 65 percent ownership in Sunside, with Distell holding the remaining 35 percent.

Distell would also sell its stakes in its subsidiaries, notably Kenya Wine Agencies Limited (Kwal), to Sunside as part of the deal.

“The transaction will create a world-class, Southern-African-focused, alcoholic beverages entity (Newco) with a leading beer and cider portfolio, combining the complementary brands, talent, and skills of Distell, Heineken, and NBL, to better serve consumers across the region,” Distell said.

“Newco will also have a significant presence in adjacent African markets. Newco will benefit from strengthened route-to-market and scale that is expected to unlock revenue and cost synergies, which will improve its ability to grow and compete with the other players in the region.”

Distell’s product portfolio comprises spirits, wines, cider, whisky, and gin.
Heineken on the other hand is a specialist in premium beer and cider brands.

Heineken says the manufacturing and marketing of products imported into Kenya will be coordinated from South Africa once the deal with Distell is completed.


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