On April 22, Anheuser-Busch InBev, the Belgian/US brewer of Budweiser, Corona and Becks, announced plans to exit the country by selling its stake in a Turkish joint venture, which serves the region.
According to the Evening Standard, Anheuser-Busch is “in active discussions with its business partner, Turkish brewer Anadolu Efes, about selling its joint venture stake,” an exit that will cost the company an estimated $1.1 billion “non-cash impairment charge” in the first quarter.
As part of that withdrawal AB InBev is asking its joint venture partner to stop production and sale of Budweiser in Russia.
In a press release AB InBev stressed that it “continues to support its employees, their families and the humanitarian relief efforts in Ukraine,” adding that, “support for its displaced employees and their families includes counseling, housing and financial support.”
AB InBev recently introduced Ukrainian beer brand Chernigivske to countries including the UK, Germany, Belgium, France, Netherlands, Denmark, Austria, Poland, Italy, Colombia and Brazil with plans for a larger rollout going forward.
All profits from the sale of that beer go to supporting relief efforts. And AB InBev is guaranteeing at least $5 million of support towards the humanitarian initiative.
Anheuser-Busch InBev’s decision to withdraw from Russia follows similar moves from rivals Carlsberg and Heineken.
On March 9 Denmark’s biggest brewer Carlsberg halted production and sales in Russia…
“We stand alongside the Ukrainian people and people around the world in condemning the Russian invasion in the strongest possible terms,” the Carlsberg Group said in a statement. “We have ceased all advertising by both the Carlsberg Group and Baltika Breweries in Russia, and we will stop producing and selling our flagship brand, Carlsberg, in the Russian market.”
Carlsberg has been a majority owner of Baltika Breweries in Russia since 2008. That brewery employs 8,400 people, more than one fifth of Carlsberg’s worldwide workforce.
“In 2021, Russia and Ukraine accounted for approximately 13 percent of the Carlsberg group’s revenue according to The Local, “and approximately nine percent of operating profit.”
Following suit, Heineken, the largest beer producer in Europe also announced that it was halting all its operations in Russia for the first time in 20 years. The Amsterdam, Netherlands-headquartered brewer operated seven breweries and employed 1,800 workers in Russia…