Editor's Viewpoint

Editor's Viewpoint

By: Olly Wehring

The just-drinks leader, written by the just-drinks leader.

So long, SAB - Anheuser-Busch InBev and the death of SABMiller - Editor's Viewpoint 6 Oct 2016

I'll spare you the 'Fat Lady' analogies but, if you do hear some singing this week, it's likely to be Anheuser-Busch InBev staff in a good, post-deal-closure mood.

Brexit - What is certain is that nothing is certain - Editor's Viewpoint 14 Sep 2016

Attending the UK Wine & Spirits Trade Association’s annual conference in London yesterday, I was particularly struck by one thought: Stripping out every use of the words "if", "could", "might", probably" and "likely" would have made the whole event a darn sight shorter. The main topic of the day? Of course: Brexit.

Why has Accolade Wines lost another CEO? - Editor's Viewpoint 1 Sep 2016

When it comes to HR announcements, the departure of a chief executive always gets the juices flowing. Why are they going? Where are they going? Who is replacing them? When the announcement isn’t even an announcement, however, then you’ll forgive us for being a mite suspicious. The confirmation by Accolade Wines on Tuesday of an internal memo detailing Paul Schaafsma’s plans to stand down within the next ten months is just such a curious turn. Why is he going? Where is he going? Who is replacing him? Far more pertinently, though: Why didn’t you tell us?

How Treasury Wine Estates is rewriting the rule book - Editor's Viewpoint 22 Aug 2016

For years, they said it couldn't be done. In wine, the theory goes, if you're playing a volume game then you can't all of a sudden make the switch to a value-focussed strategy. And, for a long time, they were right: Talk in recent years of getting consumers to trade up their wine choices has fallen on deaf ears. Within the space of just two years, however, Treasury Wine Estates has proved the theory wrong.

Do you buy the Wild Geese, Pernod Ricard conspiracy theory? - Editor's Viewpoint 19 Jul 2016

In our coverage of the legal ruling in favour of Irish whiskey brand The Wild Geese in Australia yesterday, I sensed a conspiracy theory of pretty impressive proportions. Could the dominant player in the Irish whiskey sector really have been looking to ride roughshod over one of its much smaller competitors?

Pie in the sky, but soft drinks is running out of choices - Editor's Viewpoint 17 May 2016

In a note to clients last week, analysts at CLSA spoke to Dr Robert Lustig, an expert on endocrinology and obesity and professor at UC San Francisco. On the call, Dr Lustig discussed "the case against sugar", the title of CLSA's note.

Anheuser-Busch InBev and China's Snow – This town ain't big enough for the both of us – Editor's Viewpoint 2 Mar 2016

For a company dead set on becoming the biggest in its field – and reportedly beyond – Anheuser-Busch InBev's decision to sell off SABMiller's stake in China's CR Snow to JV partner China Resources Beer looks more like a step backwards - and a very cheap one at that.

Sell a London craft brewer, buy a London craft brewer - Confusion at Anheuser-Busch InBev? - Editor's Viewpoint 21 Dec 2015

A relatively small transaction in the beer industry today has left me confused. Why would Anheuser-Busch InBev snap up a London-based craft brewer, when it has a staggeringly-similar entity waiting in the wings, once it completes its purchase of SABMiller? That AB InBev has lined up the sale of this SAB-owned brewer confuses me yet further.

SABMiller - Where nothing is not for sale? - Editor's Viewpoint 3 Dec 2015

When you buy yourself a new toy, the first thing you want to do is to take it home and play with it. You don't want someone taking it off you, perusing it to see if it will give you too much fun or if it will upset your friends, who may be having not as much fun as you are.

Diageo and Treasury Wine Estates - How times have changed - Editor's Viewpoint 14 Oct 2015

The timing could have been better, but yesterday's divestment of much of Diageo's wine operations has been mooted for a while. What is ironic, though, is that the buyer was itself offered to Diageo as an acquisition opportunity less than seven years ago.

Anheuser-Busch InBev has SABMiller on the ropes – Editor's Viewpoint 12 Oct 2015

If I were a betting man – and, I am told on occasions like these that I'm not allowed to be, 'cos it's illegal – I'd stick the house on Anheuser-Busch InBev. The brewer has today got SABMiller, if not in a corner, then certainly on the ropes.

Anheuser-Busch InBev and SABMiller - Here's what's going to happen next - Editor's Viewpoint 7 Oct 2015

We finally have some numbers to play with in Anheuser-Busch InBev's tussle with SABMiller. Add in a deadline that is only days away, and we've got ourselves our own drinks industry cliffhanger going on.

Will a sexed-up SABMiller tempt AB InBev to reach for its wallet? - Editor's viewpoint 6 Oct 2015

It's all too much to happen on one day for this to be a coincidence, surely? Is SABMiller showing a bit of leg to Anheuser-Busch InBev while simultaneously whispering “higher, higher” in its suitor's ear? That's what two developments today suggest.

Is Brown-Forman at the end of the Southern Comfort road? - Editor's Viewpoint 5 Oct 2015

Much as Brown-Forman would not be drawn on reports last week that its Southern Comfort whiskey liqueur has been put up for sale, the brand's performances of late suggest that the end is, if not already upon it, then just around the corner.

Editor's Viewpoint - AB InBev and SABMiller – We (all) told you so 16 Sep 2015

Today's confirmation that Anheuser-Busch InBev is exploring a bid for SABMiller will have come as a surprise to precisely nobody in the global beer industry. And, while it is by no means a done-deal, there's a certain sense of inevitability about it that many have felt for quite a while now.

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