Li Mingde, the Greater China president for Heineken Asia Pacific, denied rumors that Heineken planned to break up with domestic brewer Kingway as it began construction of its new brewery in Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong province, Thursday, China Business News
reported. Heineken is the second largest shareholder in Kingway with a 21.44% stake but rumors began circulating that it might divest its stake after Kingway’s controlling shareholder, Canton Holdings, recently blocked its long-running attempt to boost its ownership. In January, Heineken paired up with Carlsberg to acquire England-based Scottish & Newcastle for US$15.14 billion, giving Heineken indirect access to Chongqing Brewery (600132.SH). The Heineken Guangzhou plant, covering nearly 137,000 square meters in the city’s Huangpu district, required an initial investment of US$75 million and is expected to produce 200,000 kiloliters of beer every year.