SABMiller is reviewing its hostile takeover bid for Harbin Brewery following Anheuser-Busch's improved bid earlier today, according to press reports. The brewer is considering raising its US$550m offer for Harbin in response to a counter-offer by AB, the Financial Times reported on its website today.

The report, citing unnamed sources, said SABMiller executives held meetings on Tuesday to consider their response to Anheuser's US$717m bid for Harbin's remaining shares.

The report said that SABMiller declined to comment, but a source close to the situation had earlier told Reuters that the company would decide on its next move in two or three days.

In another news report, from AFX-Asia, Harbin's board is said to have recommended shareholders accept the Anheuser-Busch offer and reject SABMiller's hostile takeover bid.

Shares in Harbin jumped nearly 16% in pre-open trade today following the announcement of AB's bid. Harbin shares were indicated to open up 15.69% at a record HK$5.90.

Harbin shares have rocketed by 58% since early last month, when SABMiller and AB first squared up to each other over the Chinese brewer.