Beer giant AB InBev's quest toward total market domination continues. The beverage conglomerate is slated to buy out its biggest rival, SABMiller, for more than $100 billion dollars, but first it has to jump through plenty of regulatory hoops. The latest step involves agreeing to sell off SABMiller's stake in Chinese beer company Snow, reports Reuters.
SABMiller's 49 percent stake in Snow, which is the world's number-one selling beer by volume, is being sold to China's government-controlled brewer, China Resources Beer Holdings Co., making it the sole owner of Snow. Reuters notes that the $1.6 billion purchase price was less than expected, which is indicative of AB InBev's desire to push through its impending mega-merger by any means necessary. According to the Wall Street Journal, AB InBev "decided to sell rather than keep Snow because holding on to the business could have slowed the regulatory approval process."
SABMiller also recently agreed to sell three of its European beer labels — Peroni, Grolsch, and Meantime — to Japanese brewer Asahi for around $3 billion, another necessary step to seal the merger deal.
AB InBev's $100 billion-plus takeover of SABMiller will be "the largest deal in consumer goods history," as Reuters notes, and will create the world's biggest beer company controlling an estimated 30 percent of the total beer market and a staggering 75 percent of the U.S. beer market.