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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Moscow Brewery Preparing for Auction

LONDON -- Russian brewer Ivan Taranov is being put up for sale in an auction that is likely to value the Moscow-based brewer of Pit and Three Bears beers at around $400 million, sources close to the situation said on Friday.

The pace of takeovers in the Russian beer market is heating up, with the world's biggest brewer, InBev, close to buying St. Petersburg-based Tinkoff and Heineken set to scoop up Stepan Razin, sources said.

Taranov's beer brands include Konigsberg and Doctor Diesel, and it also brews licensed brands such as Bavaria, Gossen and Coors to give it a 4.4 percent share of the Russian beer market by volume and about 4.5 percent by value.

Although based in Moscow, Taranov has three breweries spread across Russia from Khabarovsk, Kaliningrad and Novotroitsk, and the company distributes its beer nationwide.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization were at $30 million in 2004, and the company is forecast to make EBITDA of $40 million in 2005. With brewing capacity of 4.5 million hectoliters a year, the brewer would cost just under $100 per hectoliter at the assumed $400 million price tag.

Taranov is 62 percent owned by Allied Partners, which is run by entrepreneurs Eugene Kashper and Alexander Lipshifts, and 38 percent by U.S. private equity group Texas Pacific.

Investment banks Lehman Brothers and Renaissance Capital were brought in to advise the group on its future options and have concluded that a sale is the best option.

Firm offers are due by the second week in July, and the sale could be completed by August, the sources added.