Money talks for Anheuser-Busch investors?


Money talks. And on the far coast of these United States, I can almost be sympathetic.

Andrew Ross Sorkin and Michael J. de La Merced bring us the latest on InBev’s bid for Anheuser-Busch:

In a reversal of its previous hostility to the idea, Anheuser-Busch is in active talks to sell itself to the Belgian brewer InBev in a friendly deal, people briefed on the matter said.

InBev has raised its offer to $70 a share, more than the $65 it had originally offered, a person close to the talks said on Friday.

An announcement of the deal could come as early as Monday, though people briefed on the talks cautioned that they might still break down ….

…. Helping to drive the deal talks was the indication that some of Anheuser’s largest shareholders, including Warren E. Buffett, were leaning toward backing a deal with InBev.

The turnabout comes only days after Anheuser-Busch, said to be weakly positioned to fight the takeover bid, filed a desperate lawsuit, hoping to stave off the transnational corporation’s attempt by accusing it of “a litany of sins, from rumor-mongering to lying to trying to violate the United States’s trade embargo with Cuba”.
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Budweiser takeover bid: That’s what you get for the Clamato venture!


Oh, for …. It’s not even worth it. This blog entry, I mean. Then again, the proposed beer deal is questionable, too. Clearly, InBev’s $46.4 billion takeover bid for Anheuser-Busch is about money and market share. InBev, a product of the 2004 merger of Belgian and Brazilian companies, brings to the table reputable labels including Stella Artois and Bass, as well as the ever-popular Beck’s. Anheuser-Busch, of course, is responsible for that best-selling atrocity known as Budweiser.

The proposal has sent ripples of dismay through Budweiser country. Missouri Governor Matthew R. Blunt called the offer for the St. Louis-based megabrewer “deeply troubling”, and said that he was putting state resources to the task of keeping Anheuser-Busch in St. Louis.

There are all sorts of (not quite) dramatic considerations. Anheuser-Busch could make a play for the other half of Grupo Modelo in order to raise the takeover price. The company is ill-suited, compared to other large corporations, to fend off a takeover. A rift may be opening within the Busch family. And InBev chief Carlos Brito has emphasized concessions intended to sweeten the deal, including headquartering in St. Louis and making Budweiser the flagship brand.

This last, of course, might seem a surprising suggestion for a company with reputable names in its stable, but in the end it’s not. This is, after all, an attempt to create the world’s largest brewing company: that Budweiser is a crime against beer is of little concern when the stakes are so high. After all, Anheuser-Busch is iconic, and Budweiser a household name.

And while the takeover, if successful, would mark the end of an American era, it is probably too much to ask that the product quality somehow improve. Budweiser is, after all, a trademark in repugnance. Barring that, however, Carlos Brito could win much affection by publicly terminating, denouncing, and promising to never make such a horrendous mistake as the Budweiser & Clamato venture.

Now that ain’t right ….


That ain't right

I found out from Megan Selig at Slog. I couldn’t just leave it at that. It seemed too much like a joke. While I still don’t know what “chelada” means, apparently Bud Clamato has been around at least since last summer.

It’s not a sign of the Apocalypse, but a strong suggestion that the Devil is real and works for Anheuser-Busch.