South Africa Regulator Unlikely To Meet New SABMiller Deadline

By Publications Checkout
South Africa Regulator Unlikely To Meet New SABMiller Deadline

South Africa’s Competition Commission probably won’t meet a new deadline to complete an investigation into Anheuser-Busch InBev NV’s takeover of SABMiller Plc after the merging companies granted a five business-day extension to 12 April.

"It’s unlikely that the case will be completed by the 12th," Itumeleng Lesofe, spokesman for the Pretoria-based antitrust regulator, said by phone on Thursday. "There are still issues that need to be considered."

The antitrust agency needs to make a recommendation about the deal to South Africa’s Competition Tribunal, which is among regulatory authorities across the world that must sign off on the £74.7-billion ($105.1 billion) takeover that combines the world’s biggest brewers. The Commission’s previous deadline was on 5 April.

Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel has filed a notice with the Competition Commission of his intention to participate in the proceedings, Lesofe said. He can get involved at any time, including at the Tribunal stage. A spokesman for the ministry didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

London-based SABMiller, which started selling beer to gold miners in Johannesburg in 1895, controls 90 per cent of South Africa’s market.

News by Bloomberg, edited by Hospitality Ireland