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BRUSSELS, Belgium – Anheuser-Busch InBev said on Friday, March 11, it was 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 in Russia and Ukraine, but does not have a controlling stake and does not consolidate it in its accounts.
“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.
The company said it was still awaiting confirmation from its partner that Bud sales would be suspended.
AB InBev’s move follows that of other major brewers. Heineken and Carlsberg have stopped sales of their namesake leading brands in Russia and ring-fenced their Russian operations.
The AB InBev-Efes joint venture has 11 breweries in Russia, employing 3,500 people, and 3 in Ukraine, employing 1,800.
AB InBev said the employees would continue to be supported and paid.
It added it was working with the Red Cross, local nongovernmental organizations, and other consumer product groups to provide food, blankets, medical supplies, and 2 million cans of drinking water to Ukraine and the surrounding refugee relief areas. – Rappler.com