After a few months of intensive negotiations, on 6 June 2018 EFFAT and the Special Negotiating Body of Asahi Breweries Europe signed an EWC agreement in Pilsen (Czech Republic).
In April 2016 Asahi Group Holdings, Ltd. (“Asahi”) completed the acquisition of former SABMIller plc’s Peroni, Grolsch and Meantime brands and associated businesses (the PGM Business). Then, in March 2017 Asahi Group Holdings, Ltd. (“Asahi”) acquired businesses from ABInbev in the Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Poland, Hungary and Romania and other related assets owned by SABMiller Limited (formerly, SABMiller plc) in Central and Eastern European countries. Asahi Group Holdings established Asahi Breweries Europe Group (“ABEG”) for the purposes of managing businesses in these five countries. ABEG is a subsidiary of Asahi. Nowadays the PGM Business (currently owned and managed by Asahi Group Holdings) and ABEG are managed as two separate businesses. EFFAT is currently involved in the negotiation of a EWC agreement for the PGM Business.
ABEG nowadays employs almost 10,000 people in its European business, including Plzeňský Prazdroj in the Czech Republic, Pivovary Topvar in Slovakia, Dreher in Hungary, Ursus in Romania, Kompania Piwowarska in Poland, a business unit in South Korea and export businesses in European markets. Asahi Breweries Europe has its headquarters in Prague.
Enrico Somaglia, EFFAT Expert during the negotiations, commented on the newly signed agreement: “We believe this agreement will ensure a fruitful information and consultation process at European level in ABEG. I must thank all the members of the Special Negotiating Body as well as EFFAT member organisations for the hard work and active cooperation. We must also say that from the onset we were confronted with a positive attitude from the management’s side. This allowed for a constructive dialogue during the negotiations”.
The agreement is particularly advanced in some of it provisions and provides for a detailed consultation process to be carried out before the final decision is taken.