AB InBev to pour $2bn into U.S. breweries through 2020

Anheuser-Busch InBev on Monday announced an ambitious programme to spend $2bn in investment in its U.S. operations over the next four years to increase brewing capabilities.

The world’s largest brewer said it will spend $500m each year for the next four years – describing it as one of the biggest ever capital investment programmes in the U.S. brewing history.

According to the company, $200m will go into expanding capacity in the breweries as well as distribution; $180m will be on product packaging and innovation and $58m to improve sustainability.

It is a vote of confidence in wholesalers and the American economy and brewing industry,” said Joao Castro Neves, President and CEO of U.S. arm of AB InBev.

Big brewers have been struggling for growth in the American market over the years as spirits, wines and smaller craft startups have eaten into their market share.

Since the completion of the merger of SABMiller and AB InBev in October, there has been a general feeling among American wholesalers that the newly merged entity will focus its sights on untapped international markets, like in Africa.

Castro Neves said the U.S. remains the most important market for the brewer from both a sales and profit perspective.

The best way to show your commitment is to reaffirm your investment in the marketplace,” he said.

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