Subscriber login Close [x]
remember me
You are not logged in.

Kirin and Suntory in merger talks - report

Published:  13 July, 2009

Japan's giant Suntory and Kirin drinks producers are reported to be considering a merger that would create one of the world's largest drinks groups.

The New York Times said Suntory had confirmed that a merger was on the cards, but a statement form Kirin poured cold water on the claims.

Kirin said that "nothing had been resolved" about a possible business merger.

It added: "Kirin and Suntory have already collaborated in various operational areas such as distribution and procurement."

Kirin beers and Suntory beer and whisky are both sold in the UK but are relatively niche products. A merger would increase the potential for brands from both portfolios to become bigger presences on the European drinks scene.

Kirin has a licensed brewing deal with Wells & Young's for its Kirin Ichiban brand.

Suntory's best-known brands in the UK are Bowmore Scotch whisky and the Midori liqueur.

A merger would bring together two companies with combined sales of US$41 billion.

Kirin has already been in acquisitive mood this year, buying out the Australia brewer Lion Nathan.