Anheuser-Busch InBev: AB InBev Asia unit guides H.K IPO pricing toward low end

By Crystal Tse

Budweiser Brewing Company APAC Ltd., the Asia Pacific unit of Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, is guiding potential investors that it could price its $9.8 billion Hong Kong initial public offering toward the low end of a marketed range.

The company will stop taking orders from investors in Asia and Europe at 5 p.m. in each region and at noon New York time, according to a message communicated to fund managers Thursday. The firm is offering 1.63 billion shares at HK$40 to HK$47 each. The final price hasn’t been set yet and the pricing level is subject to change.

The order books have been oversubscribed and have continued to grow steadily, with orders from investors including long-only and North America pension funds, the message shows.

Even if the offering is to be priced at the bottom, Budweiser’s $8.3 billion share sale would still be the biggest globally this year, trumping Uber Technologies Inc.’s $8.1 billion deal, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The brewer’s IPO is set to almost double the amount that companies raised through first-time share sale in Hong Kong in 2019, which stood at $9.4 billion as of Thursday, Bloomberg data shows.

The unit of the world’s biggest brewer is on track to price its offering on July 11 US time, the message said. A representative for the company declined to comment.

JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Morgan Stanley are joint sponsors for the Hong Kong share sale. Trading is expected to start on July 19.

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