Heineken mulls increasing offer for Asia Pacific Breweries

Dutch brewer Heineken NV (AMS:HEIA) is holding discussions to possibly improve its SGD50.00 (USD39.93/EUR32.26) a share offer for the direct and indirect stakes in Singapore-based peer Asia Pacific Breweries Ltd (SGX:A46), or APB, held by Fraser & Neave Ltd (SGX:FNN), or F&N, Reuters reported today citing knowledgeable sources.

The Dutch firm could lift its offer by up to 10% subject to F&N’s rejecting an unsolicited and conditional bid of SGD55.00 apiece for its direct 7.3% stake in APB. The SGD1bn partial bid was launched last week by Thailand’s Kindest Place Groups Ltd (KPG), which is owned by Thai billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi’s son-in-law. Charoen is the owner of Thai Beverage Pcl (SGX:Y92), F&N’s biggest shareholder with some 24%.

Neither F&N, nor Heineken wished to comment.

Heineken’s total bid for the 58% stake in APB, which it does not own, is valued at SGD7.7bn. This includes a mandatory general offer for minorities in APB for up to SGD2.4bn. F&N’s board already recommended the Dutch firm’s offer to its shareholders on 3 August.

Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) serves as advisor of F&N, whereas Citigroup (NYSE:C) and Credit Suisse (NYSE:CS) act as advisers to Heineken. KPG uses the services of Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) and HSBC (NYSE:HBC).