Some Georgian producers of beer see a threat in building Heineken beer factory in Georgia.
Kazbegi founder Gogi Topadze notes that in total four large companies are operating on Georgia’s beer market today. These are Kazbegi, Natakhtari, Zedazeni and Castel. Any from these two companies can fully cover Georgia’s demand for beer. Therefore, Topadze cannot understand why it became necessary to bring a foreign company to the Georgian market and thereby limit the local production.
“In Georgia, 22 liters of beer are brewed per capita, while in Germany — 120 liters, but there’s a different culture there, Germany is not a wine culture, whereas we have a wine country. In October when the local wine is available for sale, beer sales practically halve,” Topadze says. According to the businessman, Heineken’s entry will dramatically decrease the domestic market. Zedazeni founder Ceaser Chocheli assesses Heineken’s entry into the Georgian market differently. In his words, this fact will not pose any problems to the Georgian producers. Moreover, he expects beer sales to even grow.
Corporate Director at Natakhtari Nikoloz Khundzakishvili learned about the construction of Heineken brewery from CBW. He says he was not aware of the information and refrains from evaluating. CBW exclusively learned that Teliani Valley is planning to build Heineken brewery with the financial support of Bank of Georgia. The bank has approved the loan for this purpose. Construction of the plant will commence in Natakhtari, Georgia.