Brewer Kirin to buy 30.3% stake in cosmetics firm Fancl for $1.2 billion

FILE PHOTO - Japanese brewer Kirin Holdings' Heartland bottled beers are seen in a crate at its factory in Toride, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan July 14, 2017. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese brewer Kirin Holdings Co Ltd 2503.T said on Tuesday it would take a 30.3% stake in cosmetics company Fancl Corp 4921.T for 129 billion yen ($1.21 billion) as it reduces its exposure to the shrinking domestic beer market.

Japan's second-biggest beer maker's strategy of shedding underperforming overseas assets and expanding into health foods and beverages contrasts with peer Asahi Group Holdings Ltd 2502.T that has snapped up overseas beer brands including Anheuser-Busch InBev's ABI.BR Australian assets.

Kirin’s investment in Fancl, which is known for its preservative-free cosmetics and supplements, accelerates that shift and will, the two companies said, help expedite the development of new products.

($1 = 106.5200 yen)

Reporting by Sam Nussey; Editing by Himani Sarkar