InBev-SABMiller merger would include China’s biggest beer
BEIJING — A potential prize for AB InBev in its bid for SABMiller is a Chinese beer that is the world’s biggest seller.
But any deal will face Chinese regulators who have barred the two brewing giants in the past from cooperating.
China already drinks one-quarter of the world’s beer and is the focus of intense foreign interest, because even with its economy cooling, demand is growing, while Western markets are flat or declining.
SABMiller has a leading position with a 49 percent stake in Snow, a joint venture with a state-owned partner that sold 3 billion gallons of suds last year, or more than one out of every 20 glasses drunk worldwide.
That dramatically could expand InBev’s Chinese footprint, which already includes Budweiser, Beck’s and Stella Artois.
“No one outside China knows what Snow is, but it is the biggest brand in the world,” said industry analyst Spiros Malandrakis of Euromonitor. Read the full story