Almost a year-and-a-half after the deal was first announced, the Competition tribunal has granted approval for the R40 billion merger with Distell by Dutch brewing giant, Heineken.
Distell, which was formed in 2000 after the merging of Distillers Corporation and Stellenbosch Farmers’ Winery, owns some of South Africa’s most recognisable liquor brands: Nederburg, Zonnebloem, Chateau Libertas, Van Ryn brandy, Savanna and Hunter’s cider as well as Amarula, amongst others.
Moneyweb said the Tribunal’s green light would see Heineken invest €2.4 billion into a newly formed business entity, Newco, with Heineken South Africa, Namibia Breweries and Distell merging, in exchange for a majority shareholding of 65%.
“We are delighted the Competition Tribunal has approved the deal,” Heineken CEO and chairman of the executive board, Dolf van den Brink said in a statement. “We are very excited to bring together three strong businesses to create a regional beverage champion, with a unique multi-category offer to better serve consumers, customers and create shared societal value across Southern Africa.”
Furthermore, Van den Brink said Heineken was committed to “being a strong partner for growth and making a positive impact in the communities in which we operate, and the proactive and comprehensive public interest package we’ve put forward is testament to that.” These measures include business investment, broad-based black economic empowerment, job creation, localisation and supplier development.