Carlsberg UK and Marston’s have announced a proposed deal to form a 60:40 joint venture in the UK, Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company.
The agreement, if finalised, will see both companies inject their brewing and distribution assets into the new beer company.
At completion, Carlsberg will pay up to £273 million to Marston’s, £34 million of which will be a deferred contingent payment. Carlsberg will consequently become the controlling shareholder, owning a 60% stake in the joint venture.
The Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company will bring together international, national and regional beer brands from the two companies’ portfolios.
On Carlsberg’s side, this includes names such as Carlsberg Danish Pilsner, Carlsberg Expørt, Tetley’s, Somersby cider, and San Miguel – for which Carlsberg has the UK licence. The Marston’s portfolio features Marston’s Pedigree, Hobgoblin, the Banks’s brand, and the UK licence for Estrella Damm, among other names.
The deal will see the JV benefit from access to the Marston’s 1,400-strong pub estate for its beer portfolio through a long-term strategic partnership.
Likewise, the new company will be able to leverage Marston’s Beer Company’s wide distribution network, spanning the independent free trade, other pub companies, the off-trade, and export.
“The creation of the joint venture is an important step forward for our UK business,” said Carlsberg Group CEO, Cees ’t Hart.
“The joint venture’s brand portfolio will allow us to offer a significantly stronger beer portfolio to our UK customers, and at the same time extend distribution into the Marston’s pub estate.
“In addition, the combined business will bring our customers wider choice, greater capacity, product innovation, and marketing and distribution efficiency benefits.”
The transaction is expected to complete in the second half of 2020, subject to competition clearance and approval from Marston’s shareholders.