Anheuser-Busch InBev SA (NYSE:BUD) has announced today that because of the planned megamerger with SABMiller, which is worth $100 billion, it had to take measures to honor promises made to the regulatory committees. In order to get the clearance for the merger between the two beer producers, Anheuser-Busch InBev will sell its Eastern European assets to the Tokyo-based Asahi Group for about $8 billion.
Asahi will pay 7.3 billion euros (about $7.8 billion) for InBev’s Busch's brewing assets in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary and Romania. Originally, these European assets were owned by SABMiller.
The deal with Asahi was criticized in Japan, as the consensus is that almost $8 billion is a price too expensive for the assets in questions. Shares of Asahi fell 4.6% in Tokyo after the Nikkei newspaper reported the buyout price tag.
The Japanese company said in a statement, "Asahi aims, domestically, to be an industry leader focused on sustained corporate value enhancement and, internationally, to establish a distinct position as a global player that leverages its strengths originating in Japan.” On the assets to be acquired Asahi claimed to be, “highly compatible with our existing business in Western Europe and will strengthen our business platform, allowing Asahi to grow sustainably across Europe."