Coca-Cola Amatil has confirmed plans to re-enter the Australian brewing industry by 2014, despite earlier disputing such rumours.
The company confirmed in documents lodged to the Australian Securities Exchange yesterday that it will embark on a six-step plan to position itself ahead of foreign brewers SABMiller and Kirin in the Australian brewing market.
In its statement, Coca-Cola Amatil predicted that could be pre-tax earnings of $1.2 billion per year in the Australia and Pacific region along.
Once premium beers came into the mix, the company said it would be looking at another $200 million oer year.
The plan will revolve around developing strategic partnerships and export programs for its Fiji-based beer brands.
Last year Coca-Cola Amatil sold its share in brewing business SABMiller, and at the time denied it had any interest in the alcohol market.
When SABMiller put Foster’s Australian spirits and ready-to-drink (RTD) business up for sale in March this year, in a similar move to it’s Fijian sale, Coca-Cola decided not to buy it, but said discussions were continuing.
Then in March, the beverage giant has announced plans to buy an 89.6 per cent stake in Foster’s Fijian business, which is held in Foster’s Group Pacific Group.
The stake cost Coca-Cola Amatil $58 million, and it said at the time it had plans to then buy the remaining 10.4 per cent of the group.
The latest plan announced by Coca-Cola Amatil will see the beverage giant entering the New Zealand market through those international partnerships.
It says it has the reputation, sales force, distribution, equipment and IT to offer a new way for foreign brewers to get their beer sold in the Australian market.
It is expected that Coca-Cola Amatil will push for local distribution rights to a number of international beers continuing to grow in popularity in Australia, including Corona, Beck's and Heineken.