AS the battle to seal a deal with BBAG, the Austrian brewer which opened itself up to bid last week, looms, shares in Interbrew fell more than 5%, on fears the Belgian giant would be tempted to overpay for a takeover.

Growing investor concern of a costly takeover battle saw Interbrew's stock fall 5.3% to €18 euros before recovering to €18.15 euros.

"The share price is down because people fear that it will again try to get it at a high price," said Petercam fund manager Johan Van Geeteruyen.

Interbrew has a reputation for over-paying for its acquisitions, in particular its deal to buy Germany's Beck' share price has suffered from its reputation of paying too much for its acquisitions, especially Germany's Beck's in 2001.