In September 2015 the beer conglomerate AB-InBev launched a long-awaited takeover bid for SABMiller, the world’s number two brewer. This new book reveals the inside story of one of the largest corporate takeovers.

The Beer Monopoly: How brewers bought and built for world domination provides a fascinating insight into how the Belgian-Brazilian and South African brewers each spent billions of dollars on acquisitions around the world, taking on massive amounts of debt in the process in a sector investors previously considered unattractive.

We are speechless. Surprised. Humbled. Incredibly grateful. Our book The Beer Monopoly appears on this year’s Forbes List “Best Booze Books”. No, no, it’s not the Forbes Rich List. Fat chance of us ever getting on to that one.

On our own behalf – The Beer Monopoly on the Forbes List „Best Booze Books of 2017“ compiled by Tara Nurin.

Dr Ina Verstl & Ernst Faltermeier, two independent and highly-regarded brewing industry analysts, give a very readable account of the birth of these giant firms and show how they progressed from the traditional ‘build and brew’ to the ‘buy and build’ industry growth model, where one deal became the precondition for the next.

Their analysis would be incomplete without profiles of the now second and third ranking brewers Heineken and Carlsberg, both still very much under the influence of their founding family and foundation respectively.

The book also sketches portraits of the larger-than-life characters who built these firms: Graham Mackay at SAB, the Brazilian buy-out tycoon Jorge Paolo Lemann at AB-InBev, Alfred ‘Freddy’ Heineken at the eponymous Heineken Group, and Jacob and Carl Jacobsen, who founded Carlsberg in the 19th century.

The Beer Monopoly is a perfect case study of globalisation where individual transactions seemed to follow the principles of the popular board game ‘Monopoly’: he who dominates a precisely demarcated territory is able to control the market.

This book comes at precisely the time when the peak of globalisation in the beer sector has been reached – there is simply nothing meaningful left to buy in the world of beer.

The authors themselves say: “This is a very exciting time for the industry. In terms of globalisation, it is at a crossroads. The big brewers are going one way and craft brewers the other. In fact, craft brewers are currently reinventing the rules of globalisation for themselves.”

The Beer Monopoly is published by BRAUWELT International, an independent trade journal founded in Germany in 1861 and today one of the leading brewing industry magazines with editions in five languages: English, Chinese, Russian, Spanish and German.

The Beer Monopoly Ina Verstl & Ernst Faltermeier
publication date 4 November 2016 price €29.90 format paperback extent 292 pages
ISBN 987-3-418-00132-69-783418-001326