TOKYO (AP) — Japanese brewery Kirin Holdings Co. will acquire all shares in Australian dairy and soft-drink producer National Foods from the Philippine's San Miguel Corp. for US$2.6 billion (euro1.8 billion), the company said Thursday.
Kirin, the second-largest brewer in Japan, will buy the entire stake from San Miguel — the Philippine food and beverage conglomerate — by the year's end, the company said in a statement. Kirin holds a 20 percent stake in San Miguel.
National Foods was a 100 percent subsidiary of San Miguel.
''Kirin will obtain a new growth opportunity in the Australian dairy products, beverages and specialty cheese businesses,'' Kirin said.
''By adding National Foods' strong brands to its product portfolio, Kirin is laying the strong business foundations in the field of 'food and health' business in Asia and Oceania,'' the brewer said.
The move comes as Kirin intensifies efforts to diversify its revenue sources amid slower growth in Japan's food and beverage sector as a shrinking population begins to chip away at its customer base.
Kirin also has a 46 percent stake in Australia's Lion Nathan.