Coopers Faces Takeover

Australian beer company Lion Nathan Ltd. announced today it plans to make a takeover bid for South Australia-based Coopers Brewery Ltd., valuing the unlisted company at $266 million.

“Coopers has a number of quality brands, including Coopers Pale Ale and Coopers Sparkling Ale. These brands are highly complementary with Lion Nathan’s beer brand portfolio, which includes Tooheys, West End, Hahn, Heineken, Becks and James Squire,” Lion Nathan Chief Executive Rob Murray said in a statement.

There was no immediate comment from Coopers, which is a tightly held company of 117 shareholders. Lion Nathan already holds a 19.9 percent stake in Coopers.

Cooper’s has been available on and off in the U.S. market, and was one of the first high quality and bottle-conditioned beers prior to the advent of the domestic craft beer scene.

UPDATE: 9/6/05

Coopers announced today that they have refused an offer laid out by Lion Nathan. For details, see the ProBrewer Interactive News section at