Carlsberg on Wednesday said it has won an arbitration case filed by its joint venture partner in India, following a row over the Danish brewer’s business practices in the country.
The Copenhagen-based brewer has been locked in a business dispute with partner, Nepal-based Khaitan Group for years, amid an internal investigation into the brewer’s local practices, which sparked a boardroom battle and concerns from its auditor.
Khaitan Group, which holds 33.3% shares in the holding company for Carlsberg’s businesses in India and Nepal, had referred disagreements over corporate governance standards to the Singapore arbitration tribunal.
In an award issued on May 4, Carlsberg said that an arbitration panel had refused to grant his partner “the relief he was seeking on the basis of various allegations related to governance and breach of shareholder’s agreement.”
The arbitration order is not public.
“Carlsberg considers its position fully corrected by the liability award and is very satisfied with this result,” it said in its earnings statement on Wednesday.
A representative of CP Khaitan, who manages the Carlsberg India JV partnership, said in a statement that the arbitration award was “partial” and that the arbitration is ongoing, and that it will give a “detailed response to Carlsberg’s allegations at an appropriate time”.
Carlsberg is one of the largest beer companies in India, with a market share of around 17%.
Carlsberg previously told Reuters in a statement in July that the arbitration decision gave the company “new options to end the dispute and partnership and secure future operational independence for our businesses in India and Nepal.”
The two sides have been at odds since 2019 over how Carlsberg India has conducted internal inquiries into its business practices.
Carlberg’s local auditor has declined to give an opinion on its financials in recent years, citing differing views from three Khaitan representative board members who have repeatedly accused regulatory loopholes. Carlsberg has denied any wrongdoing.
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