Asahi is selling its minority stake in Tsingtao beer as the beer market in China is not giving it the gain it expected since it entered in 2009, says business analyst Shaun Rein to Bloomberg. “Tsingtao is in trouble,” said Rein. “It’s not premium enough, and it’s not cheap enough.”
The overall beer market in China has declined 6 percent in volume since 2013, according to Euromonitor International. Tsingtao, with about 15 percent market share, trails China Resource Beer Holdings Co.’s popular Snow brand, which had 22 percent of the China market in 2015, Euromonitor data show.
As the Chinese economy slows, mid-market brands like Tsingtao are squeezed, according to Shaun Rein, managing director of China Market Research Group. Some consumers are looking for lower-priced beers, he said, while more affluent Chinese are switching to pricier craft beers or wine.
“Tsingtao is in trouble,” said Rein. “It’s not premium enough, and it’s not cheap enough.”
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