According to Brazilian magazine Veja, billionaire Jorge Lemann is planning to bid on the British business behind Smirnoff, Guinness and Johnnie Walker.Talk of Lemann, who founded 3G Capital and owns a stake in Anheuser-Busch InBev (ABI), initiating such a move comes amid expectations that ABI is preparing to make an acquisition. The Financial Times suggested it was due to the company deleveraging following its $20bn acquisition of Mexican beer company Modelo in 2012. Other alleged targets are SABMiller – the brewer of Grolsch, Miller and Peroni – as well as PepsiCo and Coca-Cola. JP Morgan analyst Komal Dhillon claimed that a Diageo takeover would give ABI exposure to Africa. “We believe Diageo’s beer assets, which would give ABI a foothold in Africa, could be the main appeal,” he said. However, broker Jefferies thought an outright bid would be unlikely given that 3G would need to raise £48bn to buy out the company. Read more about the drinks sector:
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