Asahi Group has acquired Miller Brands UK, adding premium brands like Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Grolsch and Meantime to its portfolio of beers.
The Japanese brewer’s investment in the new company and the acquisition of Miller Brands, which will become Asahi UK, is part of Asahi Europe’s strategy to lead the development of the continent’s super-premium beer sector, the company said.
It claimed that the new company and extended portfolio will ‘further strengthen Asahi’s offering, giving businesses across Europe access to a superior range of genuine imported beer brands and unrivalled quality’.
Miller Brands was sold off by SABMiller in an effort to meet the conditions of its merger with Anheuser-Busch, which was completed last month.
Miller Brands managing director Gary Haigh, who will continue to lead the company under its new name of Asahi UK, said: “Our super-premium brand portfolio is powered by a seamless distribution network, expert customer marketing and sales capability – this means we can extend and grow Asahi’s ambition in the UK.
“Peroni Nastro Azzurro has been a key driver in the growth of the UK super-premium sector, which is now worth £1.3 billion and accounts for more than a quarter of the London beer market. With the backing of the Asahi Group we will be able to continue our strategies for the brands, building on their success and allowing our customers to benefit from meeting the demands of UK consumers for high-quality beer brands.”
Asahi Europe CEO Hector Gorosabel added: “Today marks the beginning of what I am confident will become one of the world’s great beer companies. Consumers and customers are becoming ever-more discerning about the quality and provenance of the brands they choose. Asahi Europe has the brands, the agility and most importantly the people to deliver exceptional experiences to both.”
The investment in Miller Brands’ super-premium portfolio and the formation of Asahi UK mark a significant step-change for Asahi’s European operations, according to Asahi Group president Akiyoshi Koji. He said: “Today is a commemorative day for the Asahi Group. We are proud to have become uniquely attractive group with loved brands and great talent. I am convinced that by working together, we will be able to grow our business and serve our customers and consumers even better.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2020