AB InBev remains on track for its SABMiller takeover, Swartzberg said

AB InBev remains on track for its SABMiller takeover, Swartzberg said

An influx of investors into SABMiller may force Anheuser-Busch InBev to raise its takeover bid by as much as US$7bn in the next few weeks, an analyst has said.

UK media this week reported that an activist hedge fund has taken a 1% stake in SAB, ahead of the brewer's annual general meeting on Thursday. The purchase followed a 1.3% stake buy from another UK hedge fund earlier this month.

According to the Times, the new entrants are hoping to open up to all investors a plan that would see some shareholders paid through a partial share alternative when the takeover deal goes ahead. Shareholders who took the partial share alternative have gained a premium in the wake of Sterling's fall against the dollar because of last month's Brexit vote.

Today, Stifel's Mark Swartzberg said shareholders representing as little as 15% of SAB could effectively block the takeover unless AB InBev "sweeten[s] its deal terms".

Swartzberg said AB InBev may increase its cash-per-share offer by GBP2-5 per share, compared to the initial offer of GBP44 "along with slightly increasing the cash component of the partial share alternative".

The increase would raise SABMiller's US$107bn purchase price by between $3bn and $7bn, Swartzberg said.

The analyst said AB InBev remains on track to take control of SABMiller after 12 August.

What does Brexit mean for Anheuser-Busch InBev's takeover of SABMiller? - Click here for a just-drinks analysis