AB InBev announces final agreement to buy SABMiller

By Katherine Michalets - Freeman Staff

Nov. 12, 2015

MILWAUKEE - Anheuser-Busch InBev announced Wednesday that it has finalized its agreement to purchase SABMiller for $107 billion, which is still dependent on the merger being approved by regulatory committees.

Also announced Wednesday is that AB InBev has formed an agreement with Molson Coors Brewing Company to complete the divestiture of SABMiller’s interest in MillerCoors LLC. The total transaction, according to the announcement, is valued at $12 billion and is conditional on the completion of AB InBev’s previously announced acquisition of SABMiller. The SABMiller transaction is expected to be completed in the second half of 2016, subject to satisfying the relevant regulatory clearances. 

As part of the purchase agreement, Molson Coors will obtain SABMiller’s 50 percent voting interest and 58 percent economic interest in MillerCoors. Upon completion of the transaction, MillerCoors will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Molson Coors, and Molson Coors will have full control of the operations and resulting economic benefits of MillerCoors, according to the announcement.

If the merger is completed, the combined company would control about 31 percent of beer sales globally. AB InBev agreed to pay $3 billion to SABMiller if the deal fails to close because of failure to get regulatory approval or the clearance of the AB InBev shareholders.

Together, AB InBev and SABMiller own hundreds of brands of beer, including Budweiser, Miller, Corona, Grolsch and Stella Artois across multiple continents. Reportedly, AB InBev expects to cut costs by about $1.4 billion it the takeover is completed.

‘‘The transaction would strengthen AB InBev’s position in key emerging regions with strong growth prospects such as Asia, Central and South America, and Africa,’’ AB InBev said in a statement. ‘‘These regions have hugely attractive markets and will be critically important to the future success of the Combined Group.’’

AB InBev had made multiple offers until the current one was accepted in principle Oct. 13. The deadline to formalize the offer was extended twice.