Those globe-hopping beers – global expansion of the beer market – Brief Article
* The beer business is entering the early stages of globalization as consumer tastes everywhere begin to converge. As a result, the international beer “profit pool” could grow from less than $18 billion in 1999 to $28 billion by 2010, according to McKinsey & Co., a Chicago-based market research firm.
Global brewers have been hot to trot in seeking partnerships, acquisitions and licensing deals to better spread their brands across the world. Since outright acquisitions can be costly, some brewers have opted for minority stakes in other brewers.
Anheuser-Busch took a minority stake in the Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo in 1993 and increased that stake to 51% in July 1997. Modelo brews the Corona brand, including Corona Extra, which is the top-selling Mexican beer consumed in the U.S.
A-B has also entered into a deal with Antarctica, Brazil’s second-largest brewer, that locks up an option for future increases in equity, without consuming excessive amounts of cash upfront, according to McKinsey.
Sales of Mexican beers in the U.S. surged 20% or more in the past year [ILLUSTRATION FOR CHART OMITTED]. Anheuser has been motivated to roll out a variety of its own Mexican beers across the U.S. A-B sells Mexican-made Azteca in California, a domestic-brewed brand called Tequiza in New York and the Southwest and Brazilian-crafted Rio Cristal in Florida and Virginia.
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