The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) denied rumours it planned to buy shares of Saigon Beer Alcohol and Beverage Company (Sabeco) shares (SAB), said deputy minister Đỗ Thắng Hải.
Recently, some news outlets reported ThaiBev was planning to sell beer producer Sabeco and the ministry could buy the firm at a price of VNĐ130,000 (US$5.6) per share.
“The above information is completely unfounded. Currently, the ministry has no policy to buy back Sabeco’s shares,” Hải said on Wednesday.
He added that Việt Nam 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 Việt Nam, he added.
Last week, ThaiBev, Sabeco’s biggest shareholder, also denied rumours it was seeking buyers for its business in Việt Nam.
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 per cent stake in Sabeco for VNĐ300,000 per share from the MoIT, which retains 36 per cent.
In 2018, its net revenue rose by 5 per cent 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 per cent from the same period last year to VNĐ4.9 trillion. Its after-tax profit decreased by half to VNĐ720 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.
SAB was traded at VNĐ180,000 per share on Wednesday.
This article was originally published in Vietnamnews