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InBev to bid for Bud?
Published:  27 August, 2008

At the time of going to press, rumours were rife among stock market analysts that InBev, the world's largest brewer, is contemplating a bid for Anheuser Busch, owner of Budweiser and the biggest US brewer, with more than 40 per cent of that market.

Earlier rumours that the two brewers were in discussion over a possible merger have been superceded by speculation of an outright US$46 billion takeover bid.

InBev is itself a merger of the Belgian brewer InterBrew - owner of Stella Artois, Beck's, Hoegaarden and Leffe - with the Brazilian brewer AmBev, owners of the Brahma brand.

Many consider a tie-up as the ultimate piece of beer industry consolidation - bringing together a company that is dominant in Europe and South America but fairly non-existent in the US with America's foremost brewer.

A-B also owns a significant share of the leading Mexican beer brand Corona, the number two premium export beer after Heineken, and more than 20 per cent of leading Chinese brewer Tsingtao.

Earlier this year, Carlsberg and Heineken formed a consortium to buy and carve up UK brewer Scottish & Newcastle for almost £8 billion, while SABMiller and Molson Coors have agreed to merge their US operations.