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The world's number two brewer is looking to step up in the number one beer market. Heineken taking a 40% stake in the parent company of China Resources Beer, the largest brewer in China. Heineken has only half a percent share there. But now hopes to challenge AB InBev and other global brewing giants for a taste of a burgeoning demand for premium lagers.
China Resources had more than a quarter of the domestic market in 2016, it's Snow beer brand makes up about 90% of its own sales. It now hopes to take Snow beer to consumers in Asia, Europe and the US through Heineken's network. And as part of the $3.1 billion deal, it's to buy over five million Heineken shares.
Heineken's net investment works out at $2.2 billion. CR Beer shares rose by more than 10% before they fell later. One analyst noting it could still take years to crack the market and compete with existing players.