POLAND – Heineken’s Polish subsidiary Grupa Zywiec is set to acquire beer maker Browar Namyslow at a valuation of US$131.6 million as the Dutch brewing firm expands to increase footprint in Poland.

Zywiec will assume full control of Browar Namyslow, a company situated in the west of Poland, near Wroclaw.

Heineken, which holds a 65% stake in Zywiec will take over the operations of the company from the previous owner, Chicago Poland Investment Group with the subject to the country’s Office of Competition & Consumer Protection.

Browar Namyslow operates two production facilities, one n Namyslow itself and the other on Poland’s northern coast in Braniewo.

It boasts annual sales volumes of around 1.7m hectolitres with Namyslow, Braniewo, Zamkowe and Kuflowe as the main brands.

“Namyslow Brewery has dynamically developed in recent years to become one of the fastest-growing regional breweries in Poland,” said Zywiec.

“Grupa Zywiec has proven its ability to read consumer trends and develop new beer segments.

Joining forces will create an opportunity for Namyslow to grow its brands on a larger scale and for Grupa Zywiec to further develop its portfolio to leverage growing consumer interest in speciality and regional segments.”

Zywiec is the second-largest brewer in Poland, behind Asahi’s Kompanie Piwowarska.

Following the merger between SABMiller and AB InBev, the latter sold off some assets inherited from the takeover to Japanese group Asahi Holdings.

Asahi Group which is Japan’s largest brewer acquired SABMiller’s central and eastern European assets from AB InBev for US$7.8 billion, giving it a third place on the continent.

FoodBev quoted Browar Namysłów majority shareholder Michael Gostomski saying the partnership will allow the company to fully grow to its potential.

In its Q3 results, Heineken experienced double-digit growth in its key markets including Poland, Brazil, South Africa, Russia, Canada, Mexico.

Reported net profit for the company’s nine months was US$1.81 billion, up from last year’s US$1.69 billion figure, as consolidated beer volumes grew 4.6% in total.

Heineken recently signed binding agreements with China Resources Enterprise (CRE) and China Resources Beer (CR Beer) to create a long-term strategic partnership for the mainland, Hong Kong, and Macau.