AB InBev turns bulge-bracket loan arranger

November 11, 2015

The beer giant unusually organized its own record $75 bln loan package to help buy SABMiller. In 2014, that would have earned a top 20 slot in global lending league tables. More practically, it burnishes AB InBev’s cost-cutting credentials by saving up to $300 mln in fees.

AB InBev’s deal skills turn into an embarrassment

November 10, 2015

The 11 pct increase in the brewer’s shares since it agreed in principle to buy rival SABMiller for $105 bln has made its cash offer less attractive. Announcing big cost savings, AB InBev’s forte, would make the problem worse. AB has good reason to subtly play down its prospects.

Thruppence: Naming that brew

By Breakingviews Columnists
October 16, 2015

It could be called Anheuser-Busch de Bebidas das Américas und South African et Asian Inter-Breweries (ABBASAAIB). Breakingviews columnists brainstorm some alternatives to this over-fermented concoction of beer-merger dregs past and present.

AB InBev must change spots to make SAB deal work

October 13, 2015

Having won its UK rival’s agreement to merge, the Budweiser brewer now gets to put its fearsome talent for cost-cutting to work. But that may not be enough. AB InBev will need to create growth and court governments to make the $104 bln bid stack up. Those are different skills.

SABMiller’s Budweiser fightback lacks punch

October 9, 2015

The Peroni brewer’s promise to find $550 mln of new cost savings by 2020 is paltry in the context of the $100 bln approach from AB InBev. SAB might have more powerful defences in its locker. It had better, if it wants to stay independent from the Budweiser brewer.

Bud almost has the SAB keg tapped

October 7, 2015

AB InBev’s $99 bln cash offer for SABMiller is robust. The alternative stock package is unusual, but looks cleverly designed to meet the tax needs of Altria and BevCo, SAB’s 41 percent shareholders. It also eases post-deal debt pressures. MegaBeer is almost here.

SABMiller’s growth focus raises Budweiser stakes

October 6, 2015

The South African-born brewer used the G-word six times in the first three sentences of an ostensibly ordinary Q2 trading statement. The intention looks clear. Seven days ahead of Anheuser’s deadline to launch a formal $100 bln-plus offer, SAB is saying: pay up or shut up.

Bud-SAB tie-up hinges on a scramble for Africa

September 24, 2015

Cost-cutting will help brewer AB InBev justify a $110 billion strike at SABMiller. But a convincing top-line growth story is required if existing equity investors are to roll into the new entity. There are several levers. Africa is the most important.

Bud-SABMiller investors punch drunk on synergies

September 18, 2015

Markets have added $30 billion to the two brewers’ value in response to a mooted merger. A simple analysis suggests that’s akin to saving at least 15 percent of SABMiller’s revenue – close to what AB InBev got from its last big deal. It’s not impossible, but it’s a tall order.

Bud’s mega-beer deal will brew global reset

September 16, 2015

After years of speculation, AB InBev has approached SABMiller about a takeover that could value the combined entity at around $280 bln. The giant would complete global consolidation of the brewing industry and lead a new round of regional disposals, spins and amalgamations.