Tim Palmer Interbrew UK is switching a major part of its distribution operations to a specialist company half-owned by rival brewer Coors. It is handing over responsibility for its secondary distribution business, including its depot network and technical services department and 1,500 personnel to Tradeteam, which is jointly owned by Coors and Exel. Its existing brewery-based primary distribution facilities will remain in-house. A spokeswoman for the Stella Artois brewer said the company believed beer distribution in the UK was set for more consolidation and it wanted to put more focus on the brewing and marketing of its beers and lagers. She said there were not expected to be any conflict between the Interbrew and Coors businesses as a result of the deal and added: "It gives Interbrew UK greater distribution capabilities than it could have achieved alone. The company is a very consumer focused organisation and working with a specialist distribution partner is a better way to serve evolving delivery requirements." Chief executive Stewart Gilliland said: "Tradeteam is already recognised as a quality service provider and, by combining our operations with theirs, it will be able to offer our customers a first class service" He said the major multiples would not be affected by the move as they receive deliveries direct from the breweries. The cost of the deal has not been revealed and it is still subject to regulatory approval. {{DRINKS }}