AB InBev completes takeover of SABMiller

'Megabrew' is complete after a year. Pic:iStock

Anheuser-Busch InBev has announced the successful completion of its takeover of SABMiller, a process that has taken a year to complete.

The deal sees the world’s largest brewer (AB InBev) and second largest brewer (SABMiller) combine into what AB InBev champions as ‘the first truly global beer company’.

Announcing the deal late yesterday (Monday, October 10) as expected, AB InBev said, “The combined company will have operations in virtually every major beer market and an expanded portfolio that includes global, multi-country and local brands, providing more choices for consumers around the world.

“Customers will benefit from a broad distribution network and strong brand-building expertise.”

AB InBev has today announced the completion of the sale of SABMiller brands Peroni, Grolsch and Meantime to Asahi Group Holdings, as agreed earlier this year and conditional on completion of the AB InBev / SABMiller deal.

It has also announced the completion of the sale of SABMiller's equity interest in China Resources Snow Breweries Ltd  (which brews Snow, the world's top selling beer) to China Resources Beer.

With the completion of AB InBev’s takeover of SABMiller, other divestments around the globe, necessary to address regulatory concerns, can now proceed.

SABMiller: ‘We’ve loved playing a part in shaping beer’s future’

Reflecting on its 120 year history last week, SABMiller highlighted its work with popular brands across the world: including Castle in South Africa; Peroni in Italy; Snow in China and Pilsner Urquell in the Czech Republic.

“It all adds up to quite a legacy – one that has seen us making beer, making friends and making history for 12 decades and our 70,000 people pouring our love of beer into every bottle,” said the brewer.

“Beer has endured for centuries.  It’s in a new, exciting phase, inspiring brewers and consumers, and we’ve loved playing a part in shaping its future.”

Long road to completion

AB InBev confirmed its approach to SABMiller in September last year, followed by a formalized offer from AB InBev in November.

However, the Brexit vote in June this year resulted in a drop in the pound, thus reducing the attractiveness of the original offer to SABMiller shareholders.

AB InBev issued a revised offer for SABMiller in July; offering £45 in cash per share, up from the November offer of £44 per share. At the end of last month, both AB InBev and SABMiller shareholders approved the deal.

The final offer values SABMiller at approximately £79bn.

The combined company will take AB InBev’s name, while the SABMiller name has disappeared. The new entity will be headquartered in Belgium.

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