With a $65/share deal for Anheuser-Busch (BUD) from foreign competitor InBev officially confirmed, BUD has launched early talks with Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo about a possible merger. BUD already owns a non-controlling stake of about 50% of the Corona producer.
A deal with Grupo Modelo might allow BUD to fend off InBev, by making it too big to acquire. However, more likely, the talks are a standard negotiating tactic. BUD is creating a second option and, in so doing, trying to wring more money out of InBev.
And the market is still betting it will succeed. BUD shares are still only a few bucks short of the $65/share offer, which suggests that the market expects InBev to raise its offer.
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