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Suntory could move into premium beer

Japanese spirits maker Suntory, which owns the Jim Beam American whiskey brand, has hinted that it could move into the premium UK beer market.

Suntory is best known for its Japanese whisky brands (Photo: Suntory)

The Suntory chief executive Takeshi Niinami told the Financial Times that the merger between AB Inbev and SABMiller has prompted the company to consider adapting to “the more competitive situation globally”.

AB Inbev and SABMiller will be expected to unload several beer brands in order to receive regulatory approval for the merger, leaving an opportunity for other companies to move into the beer market by purchasing well-performing brands.

However, the Suntory CEO said that he would only consider going into the premium market because the standard market will be dominated by the new megabrewer: “We have a competitive edge to go to other markets with our expertise and technology to brew premium beer,” Mr Niinami said.

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