Michael J. De La Merced on Anheuser-Busch InBev’s $20.1 billion deal to buy Grupo Modelo:
The deal, announced last summer, would add Corona Extra to the company’s formidable stable of brands, including Budweiser and Stella Artois.
But the Justice Department said in its lawsuit, filed in Federal District Court in Washington, that allowing the merger to proceed would reduce competition in the beer industry across the country as a whole and in 26 metropolitan areas in particular. The combined company would control about 46 percent of annual sales in the country, the government said, far outpacing Anheuser-Busch InBev’s closest competitor, MillerCoors.
Interesting that a 46 percent share is considered worrisome in the beer market. Also interesting that the company behind Corona is worth over $20 billion. Beer is big business, as we’ll all be reminded of during the Super Bowl this weekend.