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AB InBev Seeks To Suspend Bud Sales In Russia

By Dave Simpson

Anheuser-Busch InBev ABI.BR has said that it is seeking to suspend sales of Bud beer in Russia and will forfeit all financial benefit from a joint venture that operates in the country, following similar action from other major brewers.

The world's largest brewer is partners with Turkey's Anadolu Efes AEFES.IS in Russia and Ukraine, but does not have a controlling stake and does not consolidate it in its accounts.

Statements By AB InBev

"We have requested the controlling shareholder to suspend the license for the production and sale of Bud in Russia. Furthermore, we are forfeiting all financial benefit from the joint venture operations," AB InBev said in a statement.

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The company said that it is still awaiting confirmation from its partner that Bud sales will be suspended.

Moves By Other Major Brewers

AB InBev's move follows that of other major brewers. Heineken and Carlsberg CARLb.CO have stopped sales of their namesake leading brands in Russia and ring-fenced their Russian operations.

Breweries And Employees

The AB InBev-Efes joint venture has 11 breweries in Russia, employing 3,500 people, and three in Ukraine, employing 1,800.

Additional Statements By AB InBev

AB InBev said that the employees will continue to be supported and paid.

It added that it is working with the Red Cross, local NGOs and other consumer product groups to provide food, blankets, medical supplies and two million cans of drinking water to Ukraine and the surrounding refugee relief areas.

News by Reuters, edited by Hospitality Ireland. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.

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