ThaiBev says may opt not to proceed with BeerCo spin-off

A ThaiBev worker inspects boxes of Chang beer at the company's Beer Thip brewery in Bang Ban, on Oct 5, 2012. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - Thai Beverage (ThaiBev) may decide not to proceed with its proposed spin-off listing of brewery unit BeerCo on the Singapore Exchange (SGX) if the board deems it to not be in the interest of shareholders, the company said in a Friday (July 29) bourse filing.

"Accordingly, there is no certainty or assurance that the proposed spin-off listing will materialise in due course, at all, or in the form as described in the May 5 announcement," the company said.

ThaiBev was responding to a recent media report by IFR that the BeerCo listing has been "pushed back... to September-October subject to an improvement in market conditions". The proposed transaction involves a public offering of up to 20 per cent of the total number of issued ordinary shares of BeerCo.

Addressing the report, the company said "no final decision" has been made on the timing of the transaction, and it remains committed to pursuing the transaction, with "form, feasibility and appropriate timing of listing" evaluated on an ongoing basis. This assessment will take prevailing market conditions into account, among other factors.

Shares of ThaiBev rose in heavy trading after the filing. The stock was up 0.5 cent, or 0.8 per cent, at 64.5 cents at 11.09am, with 10.58 million shares traded.

ThaiBev had previously received a no-objection letter from SGX for the proposed listing in February 2021, but later deferred the transaction due to market uncertainties amid the pandemic. It announced the resumption of the proposed transaction on May 5 this year, with confirmation that SGX's initial no-objection letter will continue to apply.

Associated with the Chang and Bia Saigon brands, BeerCo has three breweries in Thailand and a network of 26 breweries in Vietnam.

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