Vietnam To Fully Privatise Country’s Largest Brewery
Jul 04, 2020

Vietnam’s government will sell its remaining 36-per cent stake in the country’s largest brewer Sabeco by the end of this year, according to a government document released this week, Reuters reported.

Sabeco, formally known as Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage Corp based in Ho Chi Minh City, has a market capitalisation of $4.5 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade will complete the transfer of the stake to the state-owned State Capital Investment Corp (SCIC) by the end of August to pave the way for the sale, the document dated June 29 said, adding that no detailed plans for the sales process have been worked out yet.

“We look forward to welcoming SCIC as our shareholder and working closely with SCIC to the betterment of Sabeco in the near future,” the brewery said in a statement.

The government in 2017 sold a 53.59-per cent stake in Sabeco to Thai beer maker ThaiBev through a local entity for $4.84 billion. A year later, Sabeco, known for its Bia Saigon and 333 brands, had its foreign ownership limit in the company removed.

Sabeco said last month its business was beginning to regain momentum after suffering from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and tough local drink-driving laws earlier this year. Vietnam is the country with the highest beer consumption in Southeast Asia as per volume.

Apart from Sabeco, the government is also seeking to sell all or part of its stakes at more than 150 other companies, including Vietnam National Petroleum Group and Vietnam Airlines, according to the document.