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Anheuser-Busch InBev taking Ukraine beer global to raise aid relief

AB InBev will de-recognise the investments in AB InBev Efes and would report a $1.1 billion non-cash impairment charge in non-underlying share of results of associates, as part of its first quarter results announcement. | Reuters.

AB InBev will de-recognise the investments in AB InBev Efes and would report a $1.1 billion non-cash impairment charge in non-underlying share of results of associates, as part of its first quarter results announcement. | Reuters.

Published Apr 25, 2022

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ANHEUSER-BUSCH InBev AB has introduced Chernigivske, Ukraine’s most popular beer brand, to countries such the UK, Germany, Belgium, France, Netherlands, Denmark, Austria, Poland, Italy, Colombia and Brazil, as part of its humanitarian relief efforts to Ukraine.

Additional markets are planned and all profits from the sale of the beer will go to support humanitarian relief efforts, with AB InBev guaranteeing at least $5 million (R75m) of support from this initiative, the global brewer said on Friday.

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The world’s largest brewer, which makes Budweiser, Corona and Stella Artois, said its employees, their families and the humanitarian relief efforts in Ukraine would continue to be supported.

The world’s largest brewer, which makes Budweiser, Corona and Stella Artois, said its employees, their families and the humanitarian relief efforts in Ukraine would continue to be supported.

The brewer said it would also sell its non-controlling stake in the AB InBev Efes joint venture in Russia, and was in discussions with its partner, Turkish Brewer Anadolu Efes, to acquire this interest.

AB InBev’s request regarding the suspension of the licence for production and sale of Bud in Russia would also be part of a potential transaction, the global brewer said in a statement.

The brewer previously announced that it would forfeit all financial benefits as a non-controlling partner from the joint venture operations. The venture employed 3500.

As a result, AB InBev would de-recognise the investments in AB InBev Efes and would report a $1.1 billion non-cash impairment charge in non-underlying share of results of associates, as part of its first quarter results announcement.

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AB InBev's shares on Friday closed 2.52 percent lower at R938.47.

AB InBev's decision to quit Russia follows hot on the heels of major brewers Carlsberg and Heineken, which have stopped sales in Russia and ring-fenced their operations.

Carlsberg, the Western brewer most exposed to the Russian market, said last week it expected its decision to sell its business in Russia, to result in a writedown of about 9.5 billion Danish crowns (R21bn)

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Carlsberg, which earns 9 percent of its total revenue in the country and employs 8400 staff at eight breweries, said the sale might take up to 12 months and would have multiple implications for the group’s financial statement.

Dutch brewer Heineken, which counts on Russia for 2 percent of total sales and is the third largest brewer in Russia, earlier this week said it aimed to reduce its operations during a transition period to minimise the risk of nationalisation.

Heineken, with 1800 employees in Russia, expected to book related charges of around €400m (R6.6bn).

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Earlier this month Reuters reported Russia's domestic brewers could also face higher demand after the exit of Carlsberg and Heineken.

Most Russian-owned firms had enough hops to last them a few months, but would run into serious problems in summer if supplies were disrupted, the Russian Union of Brewers said in a letter seen by Kommersant newspaper.

Russian-owned brewers import 98 percent of the 7000–7500 tonnes they use every year, mainly from Germany, the Czech Republic and the US.

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