Vietnam seeks to raise $4.8-bn in stake sale of state-run brewer Sabeco

Vietnam is seeking to raise at least $4.8 billion from selling a stake in state-run brewer Saigon Beer Alcohol Beverage Corp (Sabeco), said, Truong Thanh Hoai, the Industry and Trade ministry's head of industry department, at a briefing in Ho Chi Minh City.

The government, which owns almost 90 per cent of Sabeco, will put on sale 53.6-per cent stake next month.

The initial price has been set at 320,000 dong ($14.05) a share, he said, which is around 29 per cent higher than the average trading price over the past six months.

The auction has attracted interest from 15 large foreign investors including Anheuser-Busch InBev NV and Asahi Group Holdings Ltd, said Vo Thanh Ha, chairman of Sabeco.

Although Asahi had expressed interest in Sabeco it has said that the initial price set is too high, while Anheuser-Busch is keen to expand in Vietnam.

Sabeco holds a 40.9-per cent market share in Vietnam, while Heineken holds 23 per cent, Vietnam's third-largest beer company Habeco holds 18.4 per cent, Carlsberg 7.6 per cent and others 10.1 per cent.

Habeco is also owned by the government of Vietnam.

Sabeco's Sai Gon beer brands include Saigon Lager 450, Saigon Export Beer bottle, Saigon Special, Saigon Lager 355, 333 Premium, 333 Premium beer, 333 beer, Saigon Special can, and  Saigon Lager can.

From a small production of 21.5 million liters in 1977, Sai Gon Beer has achieved 1.59 billion liters of output in 2017.