Sunday 22 April 2018

Brewer SABMiller rejects ABInBev takeover bid

SABMiller beer Miller and Grolsch. Photo: PA
SABMiller beer Miller and Grolsch. Photo: PA

Ruth David

SABMiller rejected an informal takeover offer from Anheuser-Busch InBev of about £66.4bn (€88bn) that it considered too low.

The initial proposal to the brewer of Peroni and Foster's beer, made last week, was worth slightly over £40 a share, while its executives and some shareholders regard a deal at closer to £45 as representing a fair value. A deal at £45 per share would value SABMiller at about £73bn, and would be the largest merger this year.

London-based SABMiller communicated to AB InBev the terms at which it would be willing to negotiate after the rejection. No final decision has been made on a potential formal offer, and it is possible the Belgian producer of Budweiser and Stella Artois may walk away from a deal, according to market sources.

SABMiller shares fell as much as 3.9pc while AB InBev was little changed.

Representatives for both companies declined to comment.

"AB InBev is unlikely to have gone this far unless it intends to see it through," said Robert Ottenstein, an analyst at Evercore.

"We still believe that a transaction with SABMiller would be financially and strategically compelling, even at a potentially higher than previously assumed offer price." (Bloomberg)

Irish Independent

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