Brewer AB InBev eyes acquisition targets: report
FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Anheuser-Busch InBev (ABI.BR), the world's largest brewer, intends to use cash generated through sales and cost cuts for acquisitions and organic growth, the group's CEO told a German newspaper.
"Thanks to cost-cuts through synergies we aim to save $2.25 billion, significantly more than the $1.5 billion we originally expected to save," Chief Executive Carlos Brito told Welt am Sonntag in an interview published on Sunday.
"We now want to grow and actively take part in consolidation within the market," he added, naming Germany as a location for possible targets.
The maker of Budweiser, Stella Artois and Beck's is expected to report a 15 percent rise in fourth-quarter core profit on Thursday, March 3, according to the average estimate of a Reuters survey.
Brito said that, even though beer consumption in Europe was in decline, the global beer industry would remain a growth market for some time to come.
"Consumption is rising especially in peripheral countries in Asia and South America," he said.
Earlier this month, Heineken NV (HEIN.AS), the world's third-largest brewer, beat full-year earnings forecasts as cost-cuts in Europe and savings from a large Mexican acquisition more than offset these lower beer sales.
(Reporting by Josie Cox)
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