Dutch brewer Heineken has entered the Peruvian beer market with the acquisition of local beer brand Tres Cruces, a deal which also includes the incorporation of Tres Cruces’ local operating team in Lima into Heineken’s overall operations.
The acquisition, the value of which was not disclosed, is in line with Heineken’s aim to build a diverse portfolio in Peru that will consist of local beer brands, coupled with its range of international brands.
In addition, the Dutch brewer has signed a new local distribution agreement with beverage company AJE Group.
As part of the agreement, AJE will serve as Heineken’s local sales and distribution partner in Peru. The new partnership will also support Heineken’s strategy in the country, as it claims AJE offers a strong route-to-market and distribution network across Peru.
According to Heineken, Peru is one of the largest beer markets in South America and one that Heineken did not yet have operations in.
Heineken, which owns the namesake brand and others such as Amstel and Sol, says Peru reports around 14 million hectoliters of beer sales per year, of which around 40% are sold in Lima alone.
The Peruvian premium beer segment is significantly underdeveloped, representing less than 4% of Peru’s total market, Heineken says.
“We believe AJE’s local knowledge and strong access to the market in combination with Heineken’s leading brand portfolio and commercial capabilities will benefit customers and consumers in the country,” AJE’s president of the board Ángel Añaños says.
Marc Busain, Heineken’s president for the Americas, said: “Peru has favorable demographics and is a promising beer market. Our partnership with AJE will be instrumental to grow our business in the country.”
Heineken’s operating profits declined by 52.5% in the first half of this year, but its beer sales have started to recover as lockdowns are lifted.