EUROPE – Molson Coors, the parent company of American beer brewer, MillerCoors has acquired stakes in Pardubicky Pivovar of Czech Republic and UK’s craft beer maker, Hop Stuff Brewery.

The acquisition is part of the company’s strategy to premiumize and expand its beer portfolio with an eye on the international market.

The deal whose financial details were not disclosed involved Molson Coors subsidiary Staropramen taking an 89% stake in the brewery, Pardubický.

Following the transaction, Molson Coors plans to invest into the brewery with an aim to more than double production within a decade.

MillerCoors said it holds no immediate plans to bring brands from either brewery to the U.S. and Pardubický will remain a separate legal entity managed by Petra Chovancova, its former senior brand manager of core brands.

“Our goal is to layer on a strong craft portfolio to our current portfolio of traditional brands such as Staropramen, giving us a scaled operation with an enriched portfolio of regional and new-wave craft brands and new capabilities built into our current business,” said Simon Cox, CEO of Molson Coors Europe.

“We all believe that it is an important step and a milestone in the history of Czech brewing.

“The deal allows us to expand our offer by excellent, high-quality and interesting beers not only for local but also for our European operations.”

Growth of this business is expected to be realized mainly from Czech Republic even as the company plans to increase export volume via its European distribution network.

Pardubický Pivovar makes a roster of brands including Pernštejn, Taxis and Porter and the deal also includes its Slovakian distribution company.

Founded in 2013, Hop Stuff Brewery sells draft and packaged beer, operating a craft brewery in Woolwich, two taprooms in London and one in Ashford.

According to Phil Whitehead, managing director of Molson Coors’ U.K. and Ireland businesses, the brewer will initially focus on growing the brand in the on-premise.

Hop Stuff deal which came via a pre-packaged administration process allows Molson Coors to retain all of its employees.