AB InBev plans to sell SABMiller Romanian assets in bid to close larger deal

Newsroom 29/04/2016 | 13:10

AB InBev announced intentions to sell the Eastern European brewing assets of SABMiller, including the ones in Romania,  to secure regulatory approval for its USD 105.5 billion takeover of its rival, according to Reuters.

AB InBev has already lined up Japan’s Asahi Group Holdings to buy SABMiller’s Grolsch, Peroni and Meantime brands for EUR 2.55 billion (USD 2.90 billion) and said that it has put up for sale SABMiller’s activities in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

A number of analysts expressed surprise at the news, given that AB InBev has barely any business in eastern Europe outside Ukraine and Russia. However, since an in-depth investigation by the European Union’s antitrust regulator would take up to 90 days to gain clearance, it is expected that the move was made in an attempt to expedite the process. The European Commission is set to deliver its verdict by May 24.

AB InBev has no direct operations in Romania, but some of its brands, such as Stella Artois, Beck’s, Hoegaarden, Leffe and Corona, are exclusively produced or distributed by Bergenbier SA.

SABMiller is active under the Ursus and Timisoreana brands in Romania, its local operation known as Usrus Breweries. In 2009, after buying Azuga beer producer, the company took over the Redd’s, Peroni Nastro Azzurro, Grolsch, Pilsner Urquell, Ciucas and Stejar brands.

Natalia Martian

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