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AB InBev - Completion of Grupo Modelo combination

AB InBev - Completion of Grupo Modelo combination

5.6.2013 9:06

AB InBev announced the settlement of the tender offer on Grupo Modelo and the completion of the combination. Recall that AB InBev announced last Friday that 89% of Grupo Modelo’s outstanding series C shares were validly tendered. Combined with the series Bshares that were already owned by AB InBev (50.3% economic interest), this means that AB InBev now owns approximately 95% of all outstanding Grupo Modelo shares. The announcement of the completion of the transaction is in line with the (revised) guidance of completing the transaction in June.

AB InBev will now create a trust that will accept further tender of Grupo Modelo shares, at an unchanged price as the original tender offer ($ 9.15), and this for a period of up to 25 months. Assuming full tender of the remaining 5% would lift the total bill of the tender offer to about $ 20.1bn.

AB InBev will now fully consolidate Grupo Modelo, as of 4 June 2013 onwards. AB InBev is preparing the purchase price allocation and plans to issue a preliminary opening balance sheet at the time of its 1H13 results release. However, the company already commented that the revaluation of its initial Grupo Modelo stake would lead to a non-cash capital gain of about $ 6bn, which adds to the current equity position of about $ 41bn.

AB InBev reconfirmed the previously announced $ 1bn synergies target from the combination with Modelo. The company also indicated that the amended transaction with Constellation Brands, whereby Constellation Brands will acquire the 50% ownership of Crown (for $ 1.85bn) and the Piedras Negras brewery as well as the perpetual rights for Modelo’s brands in the US (for an additional $ 2.9bn), is expected to close on 7 June.

As previously announced, AB InBev has appointed Ricardo Tadeu as Zone President Mexico (which will be the company’s 7th reporting zone).

Another interesting element is that a number of Grupo Modelo shareholders have committed, upon tendering their Grupo Modelo shares, to acquire the equivalent of approximately 23.1m AB InBev shares, for a consideration of about $ 1.5bn, to be delivered within 5 years. The investment will occur on 5 June. AB InBev will include the shares that are still to be delivered in the calculation of EPS. Recall that this deferred share instrument is very similar to what Heineken and FEMSA reference shareholders agreed upon a couple of years ago. Note that, by 31 May 2013, AB InBev had hedged about 80% of the shares to be delivered under this instrument.

Our View: The announcement of the completion of the $ 20.1bn Grupo Modelo transaction is no surprise after the recently released tender results. We assume that a significant part of the remaining minorities will now also soon tender their shares. We continue to believe that, despite the additional concessions made (sale of Piedras Negras brewery), this transaction makes a lot of sense for ABI, adding a new, profitable growth market (Mexico) to the portfolio, while also offering synergies potential from a wider distribution of Corona internationally. We will fine-tuneour earnings model to include Modelo for a couple of additional weeks, although this obviously does not impact our valuation case. We continue to like ABI for its strong market positions in a number of very profitable beer markets (mainly US, Brazil and now also Mexico), good execution skills & great acquisition track record. However, valuation is no bargain, and recent BRL weakness as well as disappointing 1Q organic volume growth prompt us to reiterate our Hold rating.

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