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Heineken to buy maker of Tiger beer for $4.1 bn

Cans of Tiger beer (top L), brewed by Asia Pacific Breweries (APB), are displayed alongside others, including Dutch beer Heineken (top R), at a convenience store in Singapore in July 2012. Heineken said Friday it has reached a deal to buy Asia Pacific Breweries for Sg$5.1 billion ($4.1 billion).

Dutch brewer Heineken said Friday it has reached a deal to buy Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) -- the makers of Tiger beer -- for Sg$5.1 billion ($4.1 billion).

Heineken said Singapore-listed Fraser & Neave (F&N) has accepted its offer to acquire its stake in APB. It said the F&N board has agreed to recommend the deal to shareholders.

Heineken currently owns 41.9 percent of APB, one of Southeast Asia's biggest brewers, while F&N holds 40 percent.

In a statement released in Amsterdam, Heineken said it had offered to buy all of F&N's shares in APB for Sg$50 apiece, a premium of 45 percent over the one-month volume weighted average price per share, for a total of Sg$5.1 billion.

"The board of F&N has agreed to recommend to the shareholders of F&N to vote in favour of the proposed transaction at the relevant shareholders' meeting," the statement said.

"The agreement is subject to successful negotiation and execution of definitive transaction documents between Heineken and F&N."

Heineken had earlier said that a takeover of APB would give it direct access to markets including Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Analysts have said that Heineken's offer could spark a takeover battle with Thai and Japanese investors for control of APB, which makes Tiger beer and other brands that are popular across Asia, including the Chinese market.