Ministry denies rumours of Sabeco share purchase

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) denied rumours that it planned to buy shares of Saigon Beer Alcohol and Beverage Company (Sabeco) shares (SAB).

ministry denies rumours of sabeco share purchase hinh 0
A production line of Saigon Beer Alcohol and Beverage Company (Sabeco)

Recently, some news outlets reported ThaiBev was planning to sell beer producer Sabeco and the ministry could buy the firm at a price of VND130,000 (US$5.6) per share.

“The above information is completely unfounded. Currently, the ministry has no policy to buy back Sabeco's shares,” said Deputy Minister Do Thang Hai said.

He added that Vietnam has made efforts to recover its economy after the COVID-19 pandemic, providing policies to encourage businesses to stabilise production.

Spreading false or unfounded information would seriously affect the reputation of enterprises and organisations, as well as cause damage to the socio-economic situation and investment environment in Vietnam, he added.

Last week, ThaiBev, Sabeco’s biggest shareholder, also denied rumours it was seeking buyers for its business in Vietnam.

ThaiBev said it was committed to realising the potential of its all businesses in the country, especially Sabeco to enhance its position as the largest beverage company in Southeast Asia.

In 2017, ThaiBev acquired a 53.59% stake in Sabeco for VND300,000 per share from the MoIT, which retains 36%.

In 2018, its net revenue rose by 5% and it maintained growth in 2019. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has had considerable impacts on its production and business in the first months of the year.

Its consolidated financial report in the first quarter of 2020 showed Sabeco’s net revenue reduced by 47% from the same period last year to VND4.9 trillion. Its after-tax profit decreased by half to VND720 billion – the lowest level in the past seven years.

The company has said that it is still experimenting with various ways to optimise its asset portfolio and improve equity value, including the potential to list its beer business.

VNA