Anheuser-Busch Theme Parks Are Possible Merger Casualty
June 12, 2008: 04:43 PM EST
NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)- For years Anheuser-Busch Co.'s (BUD) theme parks have been a good venue for marketing its Budweiser beer to millions of parched customers.
Belgian-based InBev NV (INB.BT) announced Thursday it plans to buy Anheuser- Busch for $47 billion, creating the first global beer company. The merger would combine InBev's sales in Western Europe, Latin America and Canada with Anheuser's dominant position in the U.S. market.
Anheuser's amusement parks, including popular SeaWorld and Busch Gardens parks, could be sold if InBev's bid is successful. In a conference call Thursday, InBev said it may sell some of Anheuser's non-core assets.
The theme parks aren't seen as a natural fit for Anheuser. But they're profitable and possibly attractive to private-equity players or other large entertainment companies, experts say.