AB InBev to offer IPO in Asia
The world’s biggest brewer, AB InBev, is putting out an initial public offering (IPO) for a small stake in its Asian business to reduce its debt load and possibly look for new acquisitions in the region.
The sale is expected to raise as much as US$9.8 billion, with 1.6bn shares being offered on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange at HK$40-47 (US$5.13 to $6.02) apiece.
AB InBev is still struggling along with close to US$102bn in debt following its acquisition of SABMiller in 2016 and this flotation would be helpful in paying off a chunk.
As reported by the Financial Times, investor demand could see the company’s Asian operations valued at US$54bn to US$63bn.
Chief executive Carlos Brito has also previously indicated that the company could be on the lookout for acquisitions in the region as well.
Most of the company’s profits at present come from South Korea and Australia but Chinas is forecast to be the main source of growth before too long and imported brands are marketed as luxury items.
The shares are expected to go in offer on 19 July.