InBev has announced it has completed the first phase of financing its takeover of Anheuser-Busch, thanks to strong support from key bankers.

The Belgium-based brewer said yesterday (28 August) that banks had continued to back the US$52bn takeover.

Felipe Dutra, CFO of InBev, said: "I am pleased that the banking community recognises the merits of the proposed combination between Anheuser-Busch and InBev, creating the world's leading brewer, and has fully subscribed to the primary syndication of the committed financing relating to the transaction."

Inbev's partners constitute a veritable who's who of the banking world, including Royal Bank of Scotland, Bank of America, JP Morgan, BNP Paribas and Deutsche Bank. The brewer will fund the deal via a US$45bn debt financing. 

Separately, the UK's Office of Fair Trading announced yesterday that it had opened an inquiry into the deal.

The competition watchdog has set a deadline of 11 September for comments on the takeover, which concerns several beer brands on sale in the UK, most notably Stella Artois and Budweiser.