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Danish beer giant to divest from Russia

Carlsberg has confirmed plans to sell its business in the country by the summer

Denmark’s Carlsberg Group, the world’s third-largest brewer, confirmed plans to sell its Russian assets in a first-quarter trading statement published on Thursday.

The company is “progressing with the complicated task of divesting the business” and is “aiming to sign a divestment agreement before the summer,” read a statement on the Carlsberg Group’s website. The company did not disclose who it is in talks with over the sale.

The report also noted that Carlsberg’s revenue in Russia grew by 10% in the reporting period, while sales volumes dropped by 5%.

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The Danish brewer announced its intention to leave Russia in March 2022, along with a number of other Western firms due to Ukraine-related sanctions. It had ceased investments in Russia and halted production, sales and advertising of the Carlsberg brand. In August, Carlsberg Group reported that the decision to leave the Russian market had resulted in $630 million in losses in the first half of 2022, despite sales growth elsewhere.

Last month, Carlsberg CEO Cees ‘t Hart said that the company wanted to add a buyback clause when selling its Russian business, which would allow the brewer to return to the country once sanctions are lifted. He also said that as part of the divestment process, the company could license some of its international brands such as Tuborg, 1664, and Somersby cider to the new owner of its Russian assets.


READ MORE: Foreign firms leaving Russia face windfall tax โ€“ Bloomberg

Carlsberg Group currently owns eight breweries of the Baltika brand in Russia, and the country accounted for roughly 10% of Carlsberg’s global sales and 6% of its profits before 2022.

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April 28, 2023 at 11:03AM
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