ThaiBev to consider IPO of $10bn brewery business

ThaiBev to consider IPO of $10bn brewery business

Thai Beverage Plc controlled by billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi is considering an initial public offering in Singapore, sources told Bloomberg. (Bangkok Post file photo)
Thai Beverage Plc controlled by billionaire Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi is considering an initial public offering in Singapore, sources told Bloomberg. (Bangkok Post file photo)

Thai Beverage Plc is considering an initial public offering of its brewery business in what could be the biggest listing in Singapore in close to a decade, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The acquisitive drinks maker controlled by Thailand’s richest man is speaking with potential advisers about the listing and may seek to value the unit at as much as US$10 billion, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private.

The IPO is likely to be the Singapore bourse’s biggest since the 2011 listing of Hutchison Port Holdings Trust, which raised $5.5 billion. At a valuation of $10 billion, the unit will also rank among the region’s biggest beer companies like China’s Tsingtao Brewery Co, although still far smaller than Budweiser Brewing Co, the Asian unit of beer giant Anheuser-Busch InBev SA. Budweiser Brewing raised $5 billion in September in Hong Kong and was the world’s fourth-biggest IPO of this year.

A deal could include ThaiBev’s beer assets in Thailand and Vietnam, one of the people said.

ThaiBev is best known for producing Chang, a lager whose green bottles are adorned with an image of two elephants. It also brews Archa beer and the German-inspired Federbrau brand. In 2017, ThaiBev’s Vietnamese affiliate agreed to buy a controlling stake in Sabeco, the country’s largest brewer, for about $4.8 billion.

Shares of ThaiBev have risen 43% in Singapore trading this year through Thursday, giving the company a market value of about $16 billion. No final decisions have been made, and there’s no certainty the deliberations will lead to a transaction, the people said. 

Representatives for ThaiBev declined to comment.

Apart from the brewery business, ThaiBev runs distilleries that produce liquor including SongSam rum, Meridian brandy and Drummer whisky. It owns about 28.5% of Singapore’s Fraser & Neave Ltd, which sells 100Plus soft drinks and Magnolia dairy products, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

The group is controlled by Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi, who is Thailand’s richest person with a net worth of about $19.5 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.


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