Thai billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi has a history of making money by fighting foreign brewers. He is now doing it again as his company is poised to see big gains in a tussle with Heineken NV over Asia Pacific Breweries Ltd (APB), the maker of Tiger and other beers popular across Southeast Asia.
Charoen, who in 2005 forced Carlsberg A/S (CARLA) to pay US$120 million to settle a legal dispute with a brewer he controlled, last month set off a battle over APB. Companies managed by his family have offered to buy stakes in the Singapore-based beer maker and Fraser & Neave Ltd, a conglomerate that controls 40 per cent of APB.
His bet on APB is already making Charoen's clan richer. Charoen's moves prompted Amsterdam-based Heineken to bid S$7.5 billion ($6 billion), or S$50 a share, for all of APB. This week, his son-in-law’s company topped that by offering Fraser & Neave S$55 a share for 7.3 per cent of APB.
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