P.M. BRIEFING : Kirin Brewer Looks to U.S., Europe

From Times wire services

Japan’s largest brewer, Kirin, is looking to the United States and Europe to put the fizz back in flat profits.

Acquisitions or joint ventures involving foreign companies are the key to a 12-year strategy that Kirin hopes will transform it from a domestic brewer into a multinational, Corporate Planning Manager Osamu Hasegawa said today. Kirin must now look overseas because the domestic beer market is all but saturated, he said. “To some extent we must do some acquisitions or tie-ups with foreign companies.”

Kirin has long been the leader in Japan’s domestic beer market, and is the world’s fourth-largest beer producer after Anheuser-Busch, Miller and Heineken.