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US: Beer Merger passes US regulator

 |  July 21, 2016

As predicted yesterday, Anheuser-Busch InBev NV won U.S. antitrust approval for its takeover of SABMiller Plc, after agreeing to give up ownership of the Miller brand and open the door to greater competition from craft beers.

The agreement allowing the two brewing juggernauts to combine runs counter to the government’s recent moves against other big deals — the Justice Department and the Federal Trade Commission have gone against proposed tie-ups in the cable, office supplies and oil drilling industries.

The merger still needs clearance from China before the transaction can close. Last month, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg that Chinese officials were close to approving the tie-up after the companies agreed to divest the maker of the world’s top-selling brand: Snow.

In order to further promote small brewers, AB InBev will be required to notify antitrust officials if it purchases a craft brewer, even if the size of the target is below the legal reporting requirements.

Full Content: Bloomberg

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