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Japanese brewer Kirin has agreed to sell its Brazilian beer business to Heineken for ¥77bn ($700m), as the Dutch group looks to take on rival Anheuser-Busch InBev in its largest market.

The two groups confirmed they were in talks about a deal late last month, and this morning Kirin said in a statement it had agreed to sell all its shares in Brazil Kirin to Heineken Subsidiary Bavaria SA.

The Japanese beer maker said the “various risks” associated with the Brazilian economy alongside the “stagnant and competitive situation” in the Brazilian beer and soft drinks markets limited the opportunity to transform Brasil Kirin into a highly profitable business.

Heineken said the deal will make it the second largest beer company in Brazil and was more positive about prospects in country: “Whilst the macroeconomic environment has been challenging over the last few years, the longer term fundamentals of the Brazilian beer market are highly attractive supported by a growing population and a positive GDP outlook.”

Kirin said in a separate statement it had acquired Mandalay Brewery of Myanmar, further expanding its presence in the country after its 2015 purchase of Myanmar Brewery.

Photo: Reuters

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