Blog: Andy MortonAB InBev's Brito might not recognise a hop, but he knows a good deal

Andy Morton | 29 September 2015

While analysts mull the numbers of Anheuser-Busch InBev's impending offer for SABMiller, there's a timely reminder in The Times newspaper this week that the proposed deal may yet fall victim to other vagaries.

There is, says the newspaper's business editor Ian King, a huge difference in corporate culture between the two firms. While SABMiller's management are passionate about beer (King uses the “late, great” former CEO of SABMiller, Graham Mackay, as an example), A-B InBev's head Carlos Brito is unlikely to “recognise a hop if he stepped on one”.

King's inference is clear - AB InBev consists of pen-pushers interested only in the bottom line, and how much can be squeezed out of it.

Whether that difference in outlook will derail a deal others in the industry have said is almost definitely going to happen remains to be seen. King hopes it will - but in business the numbers always seem to win out.

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