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Carlsberg establishes Myanmar brewery with Golden Star Group


A bar employee lines up Danish Carlsberg beer bottles at a bar in Jakarta. Photo: EPA/WEDA

Danish brewer Carlsberg has become the first foreign brewer to establish a facility in Myanmar according to the dealstreetasia website. The company has launched a $75 million [K75 billion] brewery located in Bago, 80 km northeast of the commercial capital Yangon.

The brewery is a joint venture with Myanmar Golden Star Group, a holding company involved in food and beverages. Golden Star also operates in agriculture and forestry, general trading and manufacturing and is owned by Myanmar tycoon U Thein Tun. Carlsberg has a 51 per cent share of the joint venture.

This is not Golden Star’s first joint venture in the brewing industry, it is also involved in the Dagon Brewery Co., Ltd which is jointly owned by Myanmar Golden Star Co., Ltd (15%), Myanmar Economic Corporation (50%) and Brewinvest (Bermuda) Limited (35%). Dagon Brewery Co. Ltd. was established in 1997 and produces beer under the brands of 'Skol', 'Skol Super' and 'Dagon'.

The new venture with Calsberg has a production capacity of 60 million litres per annum, the brands being produced are Carlsberg, Tuborg and Yoma. According to Carlsberg, the brewery will focus on the domestic beer market in Myanmar’s major cities.

According to the article, beer consumption in Myanmar is rather low when compared with its regional neighbours, Vietnam topping consumption at 40 litres per year, followed by Thailand (38 litres) and the Philippines (22 litres). Standard Chartered research from 2014 places Myanmar’s domestic consumption at four litres per capita per year, with strong prospects for growth.

The major competitor to Carlsberg is market leader Myanmar Beer, a brand owned by Union of Myanmar Economic Holdings. Other brands currently present in Myanmar’s market include Dagon, Mandalay Lager, Andaman Gold, Spirulina and Tiger Beer.

Future competition is likely to emerge from Dutch brewer Heineken, which has invested $60 million in a Myanmar brewery to be located near Yangon. This greenfield project is a joint venture with Myanmar’s Alliance Brewery Company.

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