Diageo share price flat after completing Red Stripe sale to Heineken as the drinks giants swap emerging markets assets

Clara Guibourg
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FTSE-listed drinks giant Diageo has completed its $780.5m sale of Red Stripe lager to Heineken.

The deal was announced in October as the pair unveiled plans to swap assets in emerging markets.

Red Stripe will join other Heineken-owned beers like Desperados, Sol, Tiger and Birra Moretti, as Diageo offloaded its stake in Jamaican Red Stripe maker Desnoes & Gedden and Malaysian brewer GAPL to Heineken, while acquiring Heineken’s 20 per cent stake in Guinness Ghana Breweries.

Read more: Don't mix your drinks: Diageo and Heineken consciously uncouple

The drinks giant, the largest spirits manufacturer in the world, is using the cash from the asset sale to shrink its debt burden.

“The transaction we have announced today continues our proactive approach to our portfolio, enhancing our focus on the core to achieve Diageo's performance ambition,” said the company's chief executive, Ivan Menezes, in October.

Diageo shares, which have declined one per cent in the year to today as the company's results struggled amid a slowdown in emerging markets, were flat in morning trading.

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