Anheuser-Busch InBev and Grupo Modelo to combine
The agreement is a natural next step given AB InBev’s existing economic stake of more than 50% in Grupo Modelo and the successful long-term partnership between the two companies. The combined company would lead the global beer industry with 2012 estimated revenues of USD $47 billion. Its operations would span 24 countries with enhanced opportunities for 150,000 employees across the globe.
“Grupo Modelo has been one of our most important partners for more than 20 years and we are very pleased to evolve our long and successful relationship into this combination,” says Carlos Brito, chief executive officer of Anheuser-Busch InBev. “There is tremendous opportunity from combining two leading brand portfolios and further expanding Grupo Modelo’s brands worldwide through AB InBev’s extensive global distribution network. Our admiration for Grupo Modelo’s business and brands has only increased with time and we look forward to joining our historic and world-class breweries. We also recognize and appreciate the critical role that Grupo Modelo’s shareholders and management have played in the company’s longstanding success within Mexico and internationally and look forward to their continued contributions.”
“We have worked together with Anheuser-Busch InBev in a productive decades-long partnership, and it is time to cement our relationship through this merger,” says Carlos Fernández, chairman and chief executive officer of Grupo Modelo. “Together we will be the leading global brewer with top brands around the world and positions in some of the fastest growing countries. This is an exciting transaction that will bring our brands and proud heritage to even more consumers internationally while offering an increasing number of AB InBev’s brands in Mexico. Grupo Modelo’s Board believes that this combination will deliver significant benefits for all stakeholders.”
The combination would create a significant growth opportunity worldwide from combining two leading brand portfolios and distribution networks. It would bring together five of the top six and seven of the top ten most valuable beer brands in the world, each with distinct brand imagery and consumer positioning. The combined company would unite Grupo Modelo’s number one position in the world’s fourth largest profit pool with AB InBev’s leading global position, further increasing AB InBev’s exposure to fast-growing developing markets.
The combination would bring together significant industry expertise and complementary geographic experience. Grupo Modelo has successfully imported and distributed Budweiser and Bud Light in Mexico for more than twenty years and has a strong track record as a leader in Mexico. The company has also developed Corona into the leading import beer in 38 countries around the world and successfully markets the brand in more than 180 countries.
Grupo Modelo’s name, identity, heritage and headquarters in Mexico City will be maintained, and the company will continue to have a local board. Carlos Fernández, María Asunción Aramburuzabala and Valentín Díez Morodo will continue to play an important role on Grupo Modelo’s Board of Directors and AB InBev will seek the board’s insights and expertise. Two Grupo Modelo board members will join AB InBev’s Board of Directors, and they have committed, only upon tender of their shares, to invest USD 1.5 billion of their proceeds from the tender offer into shares of AB InBev to be delivered within five years via a deferred share instrument.