In 2013 Carlsberg Group announced that it had signed a strategic partnership agreement with a local privately-owned leading beverage company, Myanmar Golden Star (MGS) Breweries, to brew and market Carlsberg beers in Myanmar. Under this agreement, MGS Breweries and Carlsberg formed a Joint Venture – Myanmar Carlsberg Co., Ltd. – with plans to set up a new greenfield brewery and distribute Carlsberg beers in the local market. The joint venture is 51% owned by Carlsberg.
“We have followed the developments in Myanmar closely and are encouraged by the recent political developments in the country. We believe that the timing is right for us to invest in the country. We expect that the Myanmar beer market will grow strongly in coming years as the economy expands. MGS Breweries is one of the leading soft drinks producers in Myanmar and a partner we have known for many years. This partnership is a pivotal development in expanding our presence in the country,” said Roy Bagattini, Sr. Vice President of Carlsberg Asia Region, in a press release back then.
“We are delighted to partner with Carlsberg, bringing together one of the world’s leading brewery groups to combine with MGS Group of Companies – one of Myanmar’s leading industrial groups. This collaboration provides us with the opportunity to play a key role in developing the beer category in Myanmar. As an industry leader, Carlsberg is bringing in its expertise, innovation and international standards. This, combined with MGS Group’s already well-established capabilities and local position in the market, will enable us to capitalize on the significant growth potential of the beer category,” commented Thant Zin Tun, Vice Chairman of MGS Group of Companies at the same time.
The factory had its first product ready in early 2015. Today, Carlsberg has a fully operational brewery that follows high international standards. During the establishment of the greenfield brewery, the Danish consulting company ALECTIA has acted as an adviser and project manager. ALECTIA has been involved in feasibility studies of land and water services, project execution method, tendering, procurement strategy, conceptual design, site development, construction, installation and the commissioning phases.
In a press release on the company’s website, ALECTIA states that “The greenfield project was complicated by the fact that, initially, the only resource which could readily be made available on site was the power supply. No water sources or disposal systems for wastewater existed in the area. Therefore, besides levelling the rough land to make space for the brewery as well as for roads and infrastructure, a very important part of the project consisted of finding fresh groundwater sources. Additionally, the brewery itself was designed with a full wastewater treatment plant.”
The weather conditions such as the monsoon season, high humidity levels and occasional floods also posed as obstacles towards the construction and installation work. One of the solution was to prevent the brewery from beeing flooded was to set the brewery site above the levels of local roads and adjoining lands to keep floodwater from running to the site.
As the adviser and project manager ALECTIA also made sure, that the project lived up to international standards, which also came with challenges in an underdeveloped country as Myanmar, where there has been long separation from international business.
“In terms of health and safety, one of the main challenges was getting the local workforce to adopt international standards for clothes and footwear instead of coming to work in their typical attire. ALECTIA helped establish standards for personal protection and safe working practices and developed a construction safety plan for the entire site including utilities and packaging lines, etc,” ALECTIA states on the company website.
The international standard included that quality, budget, safety and environmental protection were met.
The brewery has its opening ceremony on the 7th of May 2015.