Anheuser-Busch InBev

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Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV
Traded as EuronextABI
Industry Drink, brewing
Predecessor InBev
Founded 2008; 10 years ago (2008),
through InBev acquiring Anheuser-Busch
Headquarters Leuven, Belgium
Key people
Carlos Brito (CEO)
Products Alcoholic beverages: beer and spirits, soft drinks
Revenue Increase US$56.44 billion (2017)[1]
Increase US$17.15 billion (2017)[1]
Increase US$9.18 billion (2017)[1]
Total assets Decrease US$246.13 billion (2017)[1]
Total equity Increase US$72.59 billion (2017)[1]
Number of employees
Decrease 182,915 (End of 2017)[1]
Subsidiaries Anheuser-Busch
Grupo Modelo

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (abbreviated as AB InBev) is a multinational drink and brewing holdings company based in Leuven, Belgium.[2][3][4] Additional main offices are located in São Paulo, New York City, London, St. Louis, Mexico City, Bremen, Johannesburg and others.[5] The company was enlarged in October 2016 when AB InBev purchased SABMiller and concluded a merger of the two entities. It has been the world's largest brewer even before the acquisition of SABMiller and is considered one of the largest fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies in the world. The annual sales for the company in 2017 were US$56.4 billion; prior to the merger, ABInBev had realized US$45.5 billion in revenue in 2016.[1] The company is expected to have a 28 percent market share of global volume beer sales in 2017, according to Euromonitor International.[6] The company has recently announced a commitment to secure 100% of its purchased electricity from renewable sources by 2025.[7][8]

AB InBev was formed through InBev (itself a merger between Interbrew from Belgium and AmBev from Brazil) acquiring Anheuser-Busch from the United States[9]. In October 2015, Anheuser-Busch InBev announced a successful all-cash bid to acquire multinational competitor SABMiller for £69 billion (US $107 billion). Shareholders for both companies approved the merger on 28 September 2016. The deal closed on 10 October 2016. The new entity has approximately 500 beer brands in over 100 countries.[1]

SABMiller ceased trading on global stock markets. The company subsequently sold the former SABMiller's interest in MillerCoors to Molson Coors, sold many of the former SABMiller's European brands to Asahi Breweries and sold much of its Coca-Cola bottling and distribution interests to the Coca-Cola Company.[10][11][12][13]

Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV is a publicly listed company, with its primary listing on the Euronext Brussels. It has secondary listings on Mexican Stock Exchange, Johannesburg Stock Exchange and New York Stock Exchange.[14]


AB InBev was formed following the acquisition of American brewer Anheuser-Busch by Belgian-Brazilian brewer InBev, which is a merger of AmBev and Interbrew.

  • Interbrew was formed in 1987 from a merger of the two largest breweries in Belgium: Artois and Piedboeuf. The Artois brewery, previously known as Den Hoorn, was established by 1366. And, the Piedboeuf brewery established by 1812. In 1995, Interbrew expanded by acquiring Labatt Brewing Company (founded 1847), the largest brewer in Canada. In 2002 it acquired Beck's (founded 1873), the maker of the world's top selling German beer.
  • AmBev (short for Companhia de Bebidas das Américas, or "Beverages Company of the Americas") was created in 1999 with the merger of the two biggest Brazilian brewers, Antarctica (founded in 1880) and Brahma (founded in 1886).
  • Anheuser-Busch was established in 1852 in St. Louis, Missouri as Anheuser & Co

In 2004, Interbrew and AmBev merged, creating the world's largest brewer, InBev.[15] The deal was valued at $11.5 billion and combined the 3rd largest (Interbrew) and 5th largest (Ambev) brewers into the world's No.1 beermaker. The deal consolidated the top brands from Belgium, Canada, Germany and Brazil.[16]

Anheuser bought Harbin Brewery, the maker of Harbin beer in 2004 and Fujian Sedrin Brewery, the maker of Sedrin beer, in 2006, making AB InBev the No. 3 brewer in China, the world's largest beer market.[17] In 2007, subsidiary Labatt acquired Lakeport in Canada, and InBev increased its shareholding in QUINSA, strengthening the company’s foothold in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay.[citation needed]

In 2008, the acquisition by InBev of Anheuser-Busch was completed, creating Anheuser–Busch InBev, expanding on InBev's previous status as the world's largest brewer, creating one of the top five consumer products companies in the world. Under the terms of the merger agreement, all shares of Anheuser-Busch were acquired for 70 USD per share in cash, for an aggregate of 52 billion USD.[18]

In 2013, Anheuser-Busch InBev joined leading alcohol producers as part of a producers' commitments to reducing harmful drinking.[citation needed]

On July 21, 2017, Anheuser-Busch InBev continued its investment in the non-alcohol beverage sector with the purchase of energy drink company Hiball.[19]


The following is a diagram of AB InBev's major mergers and acquisitions and historical predecessors, produced prior to the acquisition of SABMiller.

Anheuser-Busch InBev
Anheuser-Busch InBev
(Formed 2008)
(Merged 2004 - Belgium)

Brouwerij Artois
(Est 1366, Named Artois 1717, Merged 1988)

Piedboeuf Brewery
(Merged 1988 - Belgium)

Labatt Brewing Company
(Est 1847, Acq 1995 - Canada)

Lakeport Brewing Company
(Est 1992, Acq 2007 - Canada)

(Merged 2004 - Brazil)
AmBev(Formed 1999)

(Merged 1999 - Brazil)

Companhia Antarctica Paulista
(Merged 1999 - Brazil)

Cerveza Quilmes
(Acq 2006 - Argentina)

Cervecería Nacional Dominicana
(Acq 2012 - Dominican Republic)


Harbin Brewery

(Est 1852 - USA)

Grupo Modelo
(Acq 2012 - Mexico)


South African Breweries
(Acq 1947 - South Africa)

Bavaria Brewery
(Acq 2005 - Colombia)

Foster's Group
(Acq 2011 - Australia)

Meantime Brewery
(Acq 2015 - England)


After the merger in 1987, Interbrew acquired a number of local breweries in Belgium. By 1991, a second phase of targeted external growth began outside Belgium. The first transaction in this phase took place in Hungary, followed in 1995 by the acquisition of Labatt, in Canada, and then in 1999 by a joint venture with Sun in Russia.

In 2000, Interbrew acquired Bass and Whitbread in the UK, and in 2001 the company established itself in Germany, with the acquisition of Diebels. This was followed by the acquisition of Beck’s & Co., the Gilde Group and Spaten. Interbrew operated as a family-owned business until December 2000. At this point it organized an Initial Public Offering, becoming a publicly owned company trading on the Euronext stock exchange (Brussels, Belgium).

In 2002, Interbrew strengthened its position in China, by acquiring stakes in the K.K. Brewery and the Zhujiang Brewery.


AmBev is a Brazilian beverages company formed by a merger in 1999 between the Brahma and Antarctica breweries. It has a dominant position in South America and the Caribbean region.[20][21][22] The subsidiary is listed on BM&F Bovespa, the São Paulo stock exchange, and on the New York Stock Exchange.


Anheuser-Busch is the largest brewing company in the United States and employs over 30,000 people. It was the world's largest brewing company based on revenue, but third in brewing volume, before the acquisition by InBev announced 13 July 2008. The division operated 12 breweries in the United States and 17 others overseas.

Anheuser-Busch's best known beers included brands such as Budweiser, the Busch (originally known as Busch Bavarian Beer) and Michelob families, and Natural Light and Ice. The company also produced a number of smaller-volume and specialty beers, nonalcoholic brews, malt liquors (King Cobra and the Hurricane family), and flavored malt beverages (e.g., the Bacardi Silver family and Tequiza).

Anheuser-Busch was also one of the largest theme park operators in the United States with ten parks throughout the United States. In October 2009, AB InBev announced the sale of its Busch Entertainment theme park division to The Blackstone Group for $2.7 billion. The company had been investigating a sale of Busch Entertainment since the merger with AB InBev.[23][24]


InBev was the second largest brewery company in the world.[25] While its core business is beer, the company also had a strong presence in the soft drink market in Latin America. It employed about 86,000 people and was headquartered in Leuven, Belgium, where Anheuser–Busch InBev is based.

Before the merger with AmBev, Interbrew was the third largest brewing company in the world by volume, Anheuser-Busch was the largest, followed by SABMiller in second place. Heineken International was in fourth place and AmBev was the world's fifth largest brewer.

InBev employed close to 89,000 people, running operations in over 30 countries across the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific. In 2007, InBev realized 14.4 billion euro of revenue.

Grupo Modelo[edit]

The company owns Grupo Modelo, Mexico's leading brewer and owner of the Corona brand as of 4 June 2013. This transaction was valued at 20.1 billion USD. To satisfy US anti-trust demands, Grupo Modelo sold its US business, including US brand rights and the Piedras Negras Brewery in Mexico, for approx. 4.75 billion USD to Constellation Brands, a competitor of AB Inbev in some beverage sectors.[26]

Additionally, the group has a 51% controlling stock on Cerveceria Nacional Dominicana through the AmBev division.

Oriental Brewery[edit]

On 1 April 2014, AB Inbev completed the re-acquisition of the Oriental Brewery (OB), which it had sold in July 2009. OB is the largest brewer in South Korea. Its CASS brand is the best-selling beer in South Korea. All beers produced by OB are brewed using rice.[27]

Bud Analytics Lab[edit]

In 2013, AB Inbev opened its Bud Analytics Lab in Research Park, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, which develops data research and innovation to solve problems ranging from assortment optimization, social media, and market trends to large scale data initiatives.[28]

Acquisition of SABMiller; formation of Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV[edit]

On 13 October 2015, Anheuser-Busch InBev made a bid of £70 billion, (US $107 billion when the deal closed), or £44 per share, for its largest rival, SABMiller, which if approved would give the company a third of the global market share for beer sales and a half of the global profit.[29][30] The company had previously offered £38, £40, £42.15, £43.50 per share respectively, but each of these had been turned down.[31][32][33]

SABMiller accepted the bid in principle, but consummation of the deal required antitrust approval by regulatory agencies.[34] In 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) had agreed to the deal only on the basis that SABMiller "spins off all its MillerCoors holdings in the U.S. — which include both Miller- and Coors-held brands — along with its Miller brands outside the U.S." The entire ownership situation was complicated: "In the United States, Coors is majority owned by MillerCoors (a subsidiary of SABMiller) and minority owned by Molson Coors, though internationally it’s entirely owned by Molson Coors, and Miller is owned by SABMiller."[35]

The merger (A-B InBev acquisition of SABMiller), closed on 10 October 2016. The new company is called Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV (AB InBev), based in Leuven, Belgium and listed on Euronext (Euronext: ABI), with secondary listings on the Mexico (MEXBOL: ABI) and South Africa (JSE: ANH) stock exchanges and with American Depositary Receipts on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: BUD).[36]

SABMiller ceased trading on global stock markets and divested itself of its interests in the MillerCoors beer company to Molson Coors.[11][12]

The new AB InBev entity is the world's largest beer company. Estimated annual sales are US$55 billion and the company will have an estimated global market share of 28 percent, according to Euromonitor International.[6]

As per the agreement with the regulators, the former SABMiller sold to Molson Coors full ownership of the Miller brand portfolio outside of the U.S. and Puerto Rico for US$12 billion. Molson Coors also retained "the rights to all of the brands currently in the MillerCoors portfolio for the U.S. and Puerto Rico, including Redd’s and import brands such as Peroni, Grolsch and Pilsner Urquell." The agreement made Molson Coors the world's third largest brewer.[37]

In Canada, Molson Coors regained the right to make and market Miller Genuine Draft and Miller Lite from the former SABMiller.[38]

Immediately after the formation of Anheuser Busch Inbev SA/NV (AB InBev), the Company owned over 200 beer brands including Budweiser and Bud Light, Corona, Stella Artois, Beck's, Leffe, Hoegaarden, Skol, Brahma, Antarctica, Quilmes, Victoria, Modelo Especial, Michelob Ultra, Harbin, Sedrin, Klinskoye, Sibirskaya Korona, Chernigivske, Cass and Jupiler. Anheuser Busch Company also owns a soft drinks business that has bottling contracts with PepsiCo through its subsidiary, Ambev.[39] In December 2016, Coca-Cola Co. bought many of the former SABMiller's Coca Cola operations, including those in Africa.[13][40]

As part of the agreements made with regulators before Anheuser-Busch InBev was allowed to acquire SABMiller, the company sold the Peroni, Meantime and Grolsch brands to Asahi on 13 October 2016.[41][42]

After acquiring SABMiller, Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV agreed on 21 December 2016 to sell the former SABMiller Ltd. business in Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania to Asahi Breweries Group Holdings, Ltd. for US$7.8 billion. The deal includes popular brands such as Pilsner Urquell, Tyskie, Lech, Dreher and Ursus.[43][44]

In August 2017, the company announced the formation of a 50-50 joint venture with Anadolu Efes, by merging both of their operations in Russia - with the entity to be known as AB InBev-Efes. AB InBev owns 24 percent of Anadolu Efes from its SABMiller acquisition, with the joint venture being consolidated in Anadolu Efes books, whilst being treated as an equity investment by AB Inbev.[45]

Management team[edit]

After the formation of Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV on 20 October 2016, the company was to be run by teams of "functional chiefs" and "zone presidents" who report to AB InBev Chief Executive Officer Carlos Brito. All but one of those 19 positions are held by people who were already ABInBev executives before the acquisition of SABMiller.[46][47]


Anheuser-Busch InBev is controlled by Belgian families Vandamme, De Mévius and de Spoelbergh, who as of 2015 owned a combined 28.6% of the company, and billionaire Brazilian investors Jorge Paulo Lemann, Carlos Alberto Sicupira and Marcel Telles, who owned 22.7% percent through their private investment firm 3G Capital.[48][49]


AB InBev's brand portfolio included highly popular beer and soft-drink brands. The company classified its brands as Global Brands, International Brands, and Local Champions. The following are some of the more popular 200 brands for ABInBev prior to the merger with SABMiller on 10 October 2016.[50] The combined ABInBev/SAB Miller entity has approximately 400 beer brands as of January 2017.[6][51]

Global brands include:

International brands include:

Local Champion brands include:

The company also owns distribution rights to Bacardi.[citation needed]


In October 2015, the company was investigated by the US Justice Department for buying beer distributors and preventing them from selling the beers of its competitors.[57]

In September 2016, it was reported that AB InBev had paid a $6 million fine to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for violations of bribery laws under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and for silencing a whistleblower.[58]

In May 2017, the company was criticized for reportedly engaging in anti-competitive practices after purchasing the entire supply of South African hops from SAB Hop Farms, as part of the SABMiller purchase, and making the hops unavailable to any US craft brewers.[59] Similar anti-competitive claims were also made in association with the company's purchase of Roseville, Minnesota-based Northern Brewer, the biggest homebrew-supply chain in the country, through AB Inbev's venture arm ZX Ventures.[59]

The following month, the company was further criticized for having purchased a stake in the beer rating website RateBeer, leading to concerns that the purchase was a conflict of interest.[60]

In July 2017 the company terminated its contract with „Casa mia“ pizzeria in Munich after the politician Ernst Dill vainly tried to persuade the owner to ban Pegida supporters amongst his guests. The year before Anheuser-Busch InBev already bound the owner of Casa mia by contract to interpose at any sign of political activities.[61] A company spokesperson said that the contract termination was not politically motivated.[62] In fall 2018, A-B InBev completed deals with the MLB and NBA which will allow them to use athletes' names and images when advertising. This is the first time in 60 years players will be seen in beer ads. These ads will promote safe drinking and hopefully enhance the brand's image boosting sales.[63]


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External links[edit]

Media related to Anheuser-Busch InBev at Wikimedia Commons