Industry News

A-B InBev/SABMiller deal headed for Senate hearing

Angela Mueller - - St. Louis Business Journal

The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing next week on Anheuser-Busch InBev's pending $107 billion acquisition of rival brewer SABMiller.
The Judiciary Committee's subcommittee on antitrust, competition policy and consumer rights will hold a hearing Dec. 8 at 10 a.m. on the topic of "Ensuring competition remains on tap: The A-B InBev/SABMiller merger and the state of competition in the beer industry," according to the committee's online schedule of hearings and meetings.

Anheuser-Busch InBev Completes Agreement for SABMiller

Chad Bray - - The New York Times

LONDON — Anheuser-Busch InBev said on Wednesday that it had completed an agreement to acquire its closest rival, SABMiller, for nearly $106 billion, creating what it said would be the first "truly global brewer."

The deal, reached after months of negotiations, would create a beer industry giant with annual revenue of about $64 billion and would give Anheuser-Busch InBev, already the world's largest brewer, a substantial operation in Africa, where it has little presence, and greater dominance in Latin America.

The transaction is expected to receive regulatory scrutiny given the size of the new entity and its big presence in several markets, including the United States. Anheuser-Busch InBev, the maker of Budweiser, Corona Extra and Stella Artois, said it would seek to "promptly and proactively" address those concerns.

Molson Coors Nears Deal to Buy Out Remainder of MillerCoors Venture

Dana Mattioli - - Wall Street Journal

Molson Coors Brewing Co. is nearing a deal to buy the rest of the MillerCoors LLC U.S. joint venture for about $12 billion, paving the way for SABMiller PLC to cement its blockbuster sale to Anheuser-Busch InBev NV.

As part of the deal, the U.K.'s SABMiller would sell its 58% of the venture to Denver's Molson Coors, according to people familiar with the matter. The deal, which has been anticipated since SABMiller and AB InBev reached preliminary agreement on a $100 billion-plus merger in October, would include the Miller brand internationally, one of the people said. The agreement is expected to be announced Wednesday along with a formal pact between SABMiller and AB InBev.

Can Capitol Hill Crush a Beer Monopoly?

Matt Laslo - - The Daily Beast

A bipartisan group of lawmakers want to do keg stands on the grave of the proposed merger of Anheuser-Busch InBev and SABMiller, but there's a problem: They're struggling to find a tap.

"We're going to stop it," Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) told The Daily Beast. But when pressed on the details of their strategy, the co-chair of the House Small Brewers Caucus was at a rare loss for words. "We haven't figured that out yet."

Ruh-roh.

$104B beer merger faces fierce scrutiny

Megan R. Wilson - - The Hill

The principal players in a $104 billion beer mega-merger are prepared to take some lumps from Congress and give away major concessions to U.S. regulators in exchange for a sizable bounty: A shot at a third of the global suds-sipping market.

Big Beer mashes craft brews: Our view

USA Today Editorial Board - - USA Today

The proposed merger of the two largest beer companies in the USA and the world, Anheuser-Busch InBev and SABMiller, is getting barrels full of attention. Perhaps too much. Most antitrust experts say the merged company would be required to preserve competition by spinning off SABMiller's American assets, including the Miller and Coors brands.

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