SABMiller’s joint venture in China agreed to buy HK$6.6 billion (R7.5bn) worth of brewery assets from Kingway Brewery Holdings to boost its share of the nation’s beer market.

China Resources Snow Breweries, which is also owned by the government-backed China Resources Enterprise, would acquire Kingway’s production and sales business including seven breweries, it said in a statement.

The purchase price includes the value of loans. Kingway last week said in a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that it expected to report a loss for the second half of last year, after recording a loss of HK$101.6 million in the first six months.

The stock closed 0.07 percent higher at R443.20 on the JSE yesterday. China Resources’ Snow Breweries, the top beer brand in China, had a 22 percent market share last year, according to Euromonitor International, a London-based researcher.

Shares of the company sank 1.1 percent in Hong Kong before the announcement. – Bloomberg